Conor McGregor has caused alarm with new training footage in the lead up to his third bout with Dustin Poirier.
At UFC 257 the MMA world saw a much-anticipated rematch between ‘The Notorious’ and ‘The Diamond’.
McGregor had no answers for his opponent’s brutal calf kicks and he was systematically dismantled by them. They were the deciding factor in the fight and set up a minor shock by way of a TKO victory for Poirier.
In footage released by McGregor’s social media team over Twitter, McGregor can be seen performing some routine repetitive straight punches against the bag.
Naturally, some Twitter users were quick to jump on the Irish Superstar and take the clip completely out of context.
One fan commented: "I think you should basically spend 100% of your time learning how to avoid leg kicks and being taken down or we will see the same result we saw during your last 'Masterpiece' against Dustin."
Another said: "Don't forget the calf kick please. And remember that you will be in an MMA fight, not a boxing one."
Someone else claimed: "You need a coach that you listen to make you do the tough stuff."
A fourth commented: "Maybe practice checking calf kicks my g."
The 15-second clip is just that. It does not chronicle his entire training camp, it is merely a generic snippet designed by his team to get likes, comments and to engage his fans.
As calf kicks played such a large role in Poirier’s win last time out, there’s no way McGregor would openly reveal exactly how he plans to counter them in the trilogy fight. McGregor is a two-weight MMA champion who is very much a student of the game.
He will be acutely aware of how he lost the previous fight. He is also backed by the best coaches in the business, and the great John Kavanagh in particular should be considered.
Kavanagh is McGregor’s long-time head coach and friend and will have no qualms with being brutally honest about McGregor’s faults. Without a shadow of a doubt, McGregor will come well-drilled for any calf kicks this time round.
McGregor came in for a lot of justified criticism for his stance in the second fight. He looked incredibly static and didn’t have the same fluidity of movement as he did previously.
Noticeably, his ability to switch between the different facets of MMA quickly and smoothly, looked diminished. His stance looked more akin to boxers, than the karate type-stance he was known for before.
In an interview on Submission Radio, UFC legend Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson claimed: "I think the person that has to do more changing of the fighters is definitely Conor. I mean, Dustin Poirier has been fighting pretty much the same way for the longest time.
He's got great boxing, good timing, he's tough as nails, he likes to sit in the pocket, and he's intelligent. I think Conor kind of lost something in his last fight.
I think it was all the boxing that he was doing. He doesn't have that movement anymore that you normally saw.
Like when he fought Jose Aldo, it was the movement that won him that fight. And he was kind of standing there in front of Dustin Poirier, and he took a lot of low calf kicks, and that's what settled it, sealed the deal. So, he's got to get back into moving like a karate guy.
He's got to get back into getting on his bike, using that in-and-out movement, switching sides, playing that game if he's going to go out there and beat him again.
Because he can draw out Dustin Poirier's strikes with his movement. And him being such a good counter puncher, (he) can counter off of that. So out of the two, Conor's got to get back to that."
Will a prepared McGregor be able rise to the sizeable challenge of Poirier this time round?
The distractions of money, fame and power have clearly played a significant role in recent McGregor losses, and it’s difficult to see him ever being the same fighter we once knew. Only time will tell, but this is a fight not to be missed!News Now - Sport News