World-class professional kick boxer Joe Schilling knows UFC stars Nick and Nate Diaz quite well after training and sparring with them. So, he wasn’t surprised when Nate was able to finish Conor McGregor relatively quickly last month despite not getting to train for it after accepting the last-minute UFC 196 contest while on vacation in Mexico.
According to Schilling, Nate was smart enough to pace himself, while McGregor lacked the fight IQ to do the same. "You have 12 days’ notice to fight five, five-minute rounds. There is no way that any consumate professional is going to go out there and blow his wad in the first round – unless you’re Conor McGregor and you go out there and blow your wad in the first round," he taunted, recently while speaking with The MMA Underground‘s Jonathan Shrager.
"So, Nate’s game plan was to go out there, not get knocked-out, but not waste any energy, and pick up as the rounds went on, because you have to go five rounds. You look at Nick and Nate’s style of fighting – they don’t ever do that well in the first round. They set a pace and then they drown you in it and then by the third, fourth round, guys are shooting for takedowns because they can’t stand getting hit anymore."
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Now that Diaz and McGregor are set to rematch, at UFC 200, Schilling sees things going down much the same way they did the last time out. "I think that’s exactly what happened in the fight, and I think going into another fight thinking that Nate’s not going to be in better shape and come out with an even harder pace in the first round," he continued.
"I think it’s going to be the same fight. I think it’s so obvious the wholes in Conor’s game, they were all over the place. I think the skillset that Nate has is far superior to Conor’s and Nate having a full training camp is just way different."
The kickboxer admits that McGregor could make tactical changes to fight more efficiently and effectively, but he also believes that McGregor is too intimidated by Diaz to fight in a measured way. "I think if you’re in there with someone you look up to, and you’re intimidated by, and you’re scared of, and talking all this sh-t about, your adrenaline is going to get (expletive) really bad and you’re going to try and knock him out in the first round," he reasoned.
"And, you’re going to lose like it did the last time."
McGregor wanted the rematch and the UFC made it for welterweight even though Conor is the featherweight champion and Diaz is a lightweight contender. Schilling repeated Diaz’s earlier allegations that McGregor uses banned performance-enhancing steroids, and suggested that is why he will be continuing to fight at a heavier weight class.
"If we’re going to talk about weight-gains and why he would want to stay at that weight class I don’t think it’s going to be that different when Nate talks about how you’re on steroids," he began.
"Now, you can’t get back down to that weight class, you’re stuck at that weight division because you got on steroids, but we’ll wait for Nate to say that, not me."
Whatever changes McGregor makes in his rematch against Diaz, Schilling isn’t buying the heavily-pushed notion that he is humble in "victory and defeat." Schilling said that UFC president Dana White has praised McGregor for supposedly being humble after losing to Diaz.
"No, he got humbled, and humiliated," he countered.
"There is a big difference between being humble, and being humbled. There’s a big difference."