McGregor's boxing 'obsession' cost him in Poirier loss, says his coach

Conor McGregor’s boxing ‘obsession’ cost him in his rematch with Dustin Poirier, says his coach John Kavanagh, who admits they were ‘spinning plates’ when trying to prepare for UFC comeback along with potential bout with Manny Pacquiao

  • Conor McGregor’s coach admits they were ‘spinning plates’ ahead of UFC 257
  • The Irishman made his return to the octagon but was beaten by Dustin Poirier
  • John Kavanagh admits they were ‘a bit obsessed’ with boxing training in build up
  • McGregor’s coach reveals they had one eye on potential bout with Pacquiao 

Conor McGregor’s coach John Kavanagh has admitted they became ‘a bit obsessed’ with boxing in the build-up to the Irishman’s defeat by Dustin Poirier at UFC 257.

McGregor was tipped to face boxing icon Manny Pacquiao later this year after facing Poirier in their long-awaited rematch, but a stunning second-round knockout win for the American poured cold water on the ‘Notorious’s return to the squared-circle.

Pacquiao now looks to have turned his attention to facing Mikey Garcia in May, leaving McGregor to lick his wounds and prepare for a blockbuster trilogy bout with Poirier instead.

Conor McGregor was ‘a bit obsessed’ with boxing training before his defeat by Dustin Poirier

When talking about the Irishman’s preparation for January’s rematch, Kavanagh admitted that training for several different types of combat sports became difficult to keep up, leaving McGregor under-prepared in vital areas before he stepped inside the octagon again. 

‘I describe it as a game of spinning plates,’ Kavanagh told BT Sport

‘You’re spinning the boxing plate and you realise the wrestling plate is about to stop, so you have to go spin that one, and then you have to go spin the jiu-jitsu one, you have to spin the kickboxing one.

Poirier (right) produced a stunning second-round knockout win over McGregor at UFC 257

McGregor’s coach, John Kavanagh, admits they were ‘spinning plates’ in training for Poirier

‘We got a bit obsessed with the boxing one. There was talk of a big boxing fight after that. Our bad, our mistake, our fault – no one to blame. 

‘We just have to make sure we have to keep spinning that kickboxing plate and all the other aspects of MMA and get ready for the rematch.’

While McGregor was convincingly beat by Poirier after being inactive for a year, Kavanagh insists that his fighter only needs to make a ‘few tweaks’ before returning to the UFC. 

‘We have to fix that technical detail. It’s not like we have to fix everything,’ Kavanagh continued. 

McGregor’s coach reveals they had one eye on potential bout with Manny Pacquiao (pictured)

‘It’s just a small enough area, get that back into the whole game. The knock on him was the boxing mentality going into an MMA mentality. 

‘Conor was always famous for his movement, his ability to change stances, his bounce as he would say, and we need to bring that all back. It’s there; it’s under the hood. 

‘It’s not like the skills need to be learned or even relearned. They just have to be reignited and we have to start that process.’

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