UFC commentator Joe Rogan is the latest target to enter Conor McGregor's sights for remarks he made during the Irishman's 2018 defeat to Khabib Nurmagomedov.
'The Notorious' embarked on a Twitter rant lasting four hours on Wednesday night, taunting his old nemesis before teasing a future bout against Paddy Pimblett. McGregor, 34, has been busy filming the Roadhouse remake and hasn't fought since fracturing his leg in a July 2021 defeat to Dustin Poirier.
Posting a clip from his submission loss to Nurmagomedov at UFC 229, McGregor christened one of his moves 'the springbok knee' after catching his foe in the head while he was being mounted. Rogan called out the 'illegal' move—which went unpunished by Herb Dean—and disagreed with co-commentator Dominick Cruz's suggestion he was 'gassing' Khabib, insisting McGregor was "getting smashed."
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“'That was an illegal knee on the head of a grounded opponent,'" mocked McGregor in a Twitter voice upload. “Shut up, Joe, you little fool, ya. What are you talking about, 'smash this and smash that?' What was smashed was my knee into his f*****g eye socket, yeah? S**t. ‘That’s a knee to a grounded opponent. Call the cops.' F*****g tick, ya.”
The tirade was oddly timed considering the fight occurred a little more than four years ago, with McGregor having fought three more times in the UFC. The Irishman returned to the Octagon in a dominant 40-second TKO win over Donald Cerrone in January 2020, then went on to lose back-to-back bouts against Dustin Poirier the following year.
In another address to Rogan, McGregor tweeted a picture of Cerrone's battered face following their bout. "That’s smashed up pal," wrote the 34-year-old. "@joerogan. You ever see me like that? Never."
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Many Twitter users were quick to lambast McGregor for his outburst as one wrote: "This was four years ago and Conor still can't get over it. Conor is obsessed with this loss and can't deal with how much greater Khabib is than him." Another advised that "when it comes to roasting I don't think f*****g with Joe is a good idea."
Nurmagomedov retired as the UFC's lightweight champion and boasted a 29-0 record when he hung up his gloves, widely considered one of the best fighters of all time. His focus on sambo wrestling meant only two of his 13 UFC victories came via KO or TKO, though a lack of visible damage to his opponents shouldn't disguise his dominance in mixed martial arts.
McGregor then commented on the post-fight mayhem that unfolded following his UFC 229 loss, calling Khabib an "absolute bottler." He went on to goad Nurmagomedov by suggesting his father, Abdulmanap—also his former coach, who died in 2020 due to complications caused by Covid-19—will "open hand slap you when you meet again."
"Actually you know what I don’t want to fight the smellbag there are way better fights out there but let it be known the biggest wet the bed in fighting history is what this guy is," McGregor continued. "Think of the magnitude this fight wound (sic) have. Absolute bottler you are. Father gonna slap you 100%."
During his latest social media stampede, McGregor directed some good-willed aggression at Pimblett, who has been likened to the Dubliner for his talent and skill with a microphone. "Let’s go young Paddy Pimb," exclaimed the injured star, who later said he'll be "clear for testing in February."
MMA fans were recently shocked to learn McGregor hasn't been tested by drug testing agency USADA thus far in 2022 amid a swell of attention regarding his bulked-up physique. UFC fighters are required to undergo six months of testing before they can be cleared to fight, suggesting next summer could be the earliest at which McGregor may be permitted to return to the cage.
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