This is Conor McGregor's first defeat by submission since 2010
After making the bold decision to move up two weight categories, Conor McGregor's unbeaten run and ambitions of becoming a multiple UFC World Champion have come to a crashing halt.
Nate Diaz, who accepted the 170Ib fight with just 11 days' notice, forced McGregor to tap-out in the second round at UFC 196 with a well executed rear naked choke. This is the first time since 2010 that the 'Mystic Mac' has bowed out of a fight by submission and while the Crumlin man admitted to feeling regretful about that move, he insisted that he will recover from this disappointment.
Speaking at the post-fight press conference, McGregor said:
https://t.co/o435Ec5woO slowly waiting for post fight to start— Damon B (@OpTic_DKarma) March 6, 2016
''You're damn right (I regret it). But we can either run from adversity or we can face it and conquer it. I'm simply heartbroken but I'll pick myself up.''
''This is the game, we win some, we lose some. I will never shy away from a challenge. I will never shy away from defeat. This is part of the game and I will stay in this fight.''
When questioned about where he lost the fight, a humbled Conor McGregor pointed to Diaz's two inch reach advantage as well as his opponent's longer spell as a fighter in the Welterweight.
''It's a bitter pill to swallow. I took a shot and went at it but I was inefficient with my energy. Usually I fight a man in the division that I am champion in and they crumble under those shots. But Nate took them very well and the weight allowed him to take those shots well.''
''Hats off to Nate. His range was a factor. I was hitting glove at times and it drained me.''
Looking to the future, Conor McGregor indicated that his next move will likely be a return to the Featherweight division where he will take on a contender in a title bout. But he also stressed that he is not abandoning his intentions to pursue success at 155Ib and 170Ib divisions.
''I am the featherweight champion and I feel it is right to go back down and remind them of what I achieved and what I did for that division.''
''But I am not forgetting about the 155Ib or the 170Ib division. I enjoyed that someboday (Diaz) could accept the shots and keep coming. He went into autopilot and I went into panic mode.''