On Friday, Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz sounded off on the UFC 202 conference call. Never one to restrain his barbed tongue to only one foe, the UFC featherweight champion took a shot at almost the entire roster of WWE wrestlers, saying, "For the most part, those WWE guys are pussies, to be honest. They're messed up p*ssies, if you ask me."
But McGregor didn't stop there. The Irish superstar took to Twitter to fire another salvo at the professional wrestling world Sunday.
I didn't mean no disrespect to the @wwe fans. What I meant to say was that I'd slap the head off your entire roster. And twice on Sunday's.— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) August 7, 2016
What ensued was a swift response by what seemed like the entire WWE roster, each calling out or chiding McGregor in their own way.
Coming from a guy who built a career copying my persona, I expected the type of class we get from Ronda or Anderson. pic.twitter.com/iVoC0Xva5g— Ric Flair® (@RicFlairNatrBoy) August 7, 2016
After Diaz finishes you again, I dare you to try guys like Dolph, Brock, or Fit.— Ric Flair® (@RicFlairNatrBoy) August 7, 2016
Oh you're welcome for your gimmick pic.twitter.com/0qziVjlMav
If anyone doubts whether or not Doloh could tie Conor in a knot, do yourself a favor and Google his accomplishments pic.twitter.com/h7mitMeBXn— Ric Flair® (@RicFlairNatrBoy) August 7, 2016
So much talk for a guy who fights 15 min matches twice a year...... Good for you Conor McGaiver.— Rusev MACHKA (@RusevBUL) August 7, 2016
I think McGregor could do well in the featherweight division......if the WWE had one. https://t.co/90XGpSICS9— AJStyles.Org (@AJStylesOrg) August 7, 2016
THE CONOR MCGREGOR YOU LUCKY I DONT SEE YOU BREAK YOUR FUCKING NECK YOU NEVER RESPECT MY SPORT JABRONI— The Iron Sheik (@the_ironsheik) August 7, 2016
Would you prefer to find us individually or have us all line up at once? I know your time is valuable, sir. https://t.co/XPnKhWAlza— ShinigamE (@WWEBigE) August 7, 2016
Bring it https://t.co/e9guQ9bi0f— $asha Bank$ (@SashaBanksWWE) August 7, 2016
Your the size of my leg. Shut up. https://t.co/fBVEdf8hE1— Roman Reigns (@WWERomanReigns) August 7, 2016
The way Nate Diaz Stockton slapped you or nah?https://t.co/PGDrBcVum7— MVP (@The305MVP) August 7, 2016
Never show a Jack Russell a mirror. It thinks it's a majestic Irish Wolfhound. Really, just an annoying wee yapper trying to sell tickets.— Sheamus (@WWESheamus) August 7, 2016
McGregor has 2.08 million followers. All told, pro wrestlers reacting to McGregor's tweet have over 14.2 million followers (per Mike Bohn) with several of them having more followers than McGregor individually.
The ubiquity and speed with which these WWE performers responded raises many questions. Is this really an organic occurrence or is it just a promotional "work" by McGregor and the WWE? If it really wasn't staged, why did so many wrestlers react so strongly when the internet is filled with people trash talking them constantly? Is Conor McGregor aware that former UFC heavyweight champion and current would-be top 10 heavyweight Brock Lesnar is currently on the WWE roster? Who is Dana Brooke?
The reality is, it's likely no one will know the answer to any of these questions unless McGregor suddenly shows up at Wrestlemania. However, what is known is that McGregor is more than willing to use cross promotion to increase his brand awareness, he likes making "truck loads of cash," and judging from the Twitter reaction (scroll the responses if needed), he would now be one of the biggest heels in the WWE if he made the jump into professional wrestling.
We also know that McGregor wasn't lying when he said he will "always play the game and play it better than anybody."
McGregor rematches Nate Diaz at UFC 202 on August 20th in Las Vegas, Ne. WWE SummerSlam (the organization's second largest yearly event) takes place on Aug. 21 in Brooklyn, N.Y. Maybe we will see him there.
5 MUST-READ STORIES
Results. UFC Fight Night 92 happened this weekend. Here are the results.
Dream big. Conor McGregor says he should be a "two-weight UFC world champion."
Learn from past mistakes. Conor McGregor predicts he will KO Nate Diaz in the second round.
Get that money. Nate Diaz calls Conor McGregor a "shortcut" to getting paid.
Short sighted. Tyron Woodley says he didn't have any "financial incentive" to promote UFC 201.
EXTRA CREDIT READING
Lando. Jack Slack of Fightland does a technical breakdown of Landon Vannata's weave in the Tony Ferguson fight.
Esther and Marc doing a post-fight show on Facebook Live.
And here is some of Conor rolling.
Robin Black and Dan Hardy breaking down the fight that is still 2 weeks away.
A fun highlight compilation of Chael P since he's now "basically clean."
Still a fight I'd like to see.
Rafael dos Anjos (@RdosAnjosMMA) August 8, 2016
Ishihara is a colorful cat.
I love my Salt Lake City Bitches!!!! pic.twitter.com/0MuVy5VS4x— Teruto Ishihara (@teruto_ko) August 7, 2016
A different way to market UFC that's for sure.
Ladies only! Come find me at my thai restaurant in salt lake city and give me a kiss on the cheek and win ufc tickets! Only three left.— Teruto Ishihara (@teruto_ko) August 6, 2016
He's talking about you and Ishihara being social media all-stars.
@RJcliffordMMA fuck what you talking about lol— Derrick Lewis (@Thebeast_ufc) August 7, 2016
I like how Rodriguez stole Cacers' double punch move in the second round and they mutually smiled at each other. @ufc— Alan Jouban (@AlanJouban) August 7, 2016
I'd like Cody to get a few more wins first but still a great fight.
Cody Garbrandt (@Cody_Nolove) August 5, 2016
Omri Casspi is an NBA player for those not in the know.
Seriously doubt he's UFC official. Pumped about a new era of boxing guys teasing MMA jump they'll never make though.
John Danaher with a long story but interesting if true.
The best laid plans of mice and men: As a coach one of the main aspects of my job is to conceive plans of action that raise the likelihood of an athlete winning an event. Yet despite our best intentions, there is always a good chance of things going awry that require spontaneous change and adaption in the face of unexpected circumstances. All the major MMA fight camps I have been a part of furnished unforeseen incidents and drama that could not have been predicted and which had to be overcome. Probably the most flawless and well run fight camp I ever saw was that of Georges St-Pierre in preparation for Nick Diaz (Interestingly, his prior fight camp with Carlos Condit was probably the worst). We had an excellent game plan, the physical preparation was excellent, superb choice of sparring partners, all match contingencies covered, no injuries, no backstage drama, perfect weight cut - everything was perfect - until the very night before the fight when Georges drank some watermelon juice for rehydration that had been too long out of the fridge and got a badly upset stomach. He spent the entire night vomiting. It was so sad to see such a perfect camp get ruined at the last minute by such a minor oversight. The night of the fight, Mr St-Pierre came in underweight and drained. We had to curtail the warm up for fear of exhausting him before the bout even began. There was some drama with Mr Diaz's camp insisting that both sides have their hand wraps double checked. This was done, but we did not want them to see how bad Mr St-Pierre looked, so he had to put on an act of confidence and vigor when they came in the dressing room. In the end, Mr St-Pierre showed why he was a great champion that night, putting on a dominant shut-out performance to win a unanimous decision - no one in the audience would have guessed how serious a problem he had to overcome. He used a system of pacing the rounds and timing the takedowns and allowing standing escapes to maintain the pace of the fight whilst controlling the action but at the same time, not exhausting himself. It worked brilliantly and the problem was overcome. This kind of adaptation is crucial in fight preparation at all levels.
Now Rashad is in Phuket as well.
Sneak Peak at @sugarashadevans working pads in #Thailand at #PhuketTopTeam Looking Crisp smashing pads with #Kru Nueng @aonephuket in #Phuket Thailand An honor to have Rashad Evans hit PTT to sharpen his skills 1x @ufc LHW World #Champion 1x #TUF Season 2 Winner 2x #Knockout of the Night 2x #FightOfTheNight 1x #KO of the year Vs Chuck Liddell Notable wins over Chael Sonnen, Tito Ortiz, Dan Henderson, Phil Davis, Rampage Jackson, Chuck Liddell, Bisping, Forrest Griffin, Thiago Silva & many more! A true legend of #MixedMartialArts #Boxing #ThaiPads #ThaiStyle #PhuketDreaming #team #teamwork #DrillsMakeSkills #MuayThai #NoEgosOnlyDedication #WeBuildChampions www.phukettopteam.com www.facebook.com/phukettopteam
TODAY IN MMA HISTORY
2009: B.J. Penn successfully defended his UFC lightweight championship by submitting Kenny Florian with a rear-naked choke at UFC 101. This event also featured the UFC debut of Johny Hendricks who knocked out Amir Sadollah 30 seconds into the first round.
Couple of thoughts on the Conor-WWE thing. There seems to be two (really only one) likely scenarios.
The first possible scenario is that Conor saw an opportunity to get himself in front of more eyeballs and jumped on it, tagging the WWE in the post to ensure maximum exposure, and then getting lucky that so many wrestlers took the bait. While this would still make Conor a genius for seizing such an opportunity, it seems significantly less likely than option two.
Option 2: It is 100% a work. People talk trash about the WWE all the time and it doesn't garner this type of concentrated reaction from professional wrestlers. With no inside information on this at all I can say pretty confidently that this is what happened: Conor is smart and exceptionally good at business/promotion. He saw Brock come in, make a pile of money, then leave to this other venue where he makes a ton of money also, and Conor thought, "there is a way to diversify my income. If Brock can get this special treatment, I can too." So he reached out to Vince McMahon (who you'll notice he was actually complementary of the other day in his comments about the WWE) and concocted this plan. It is exceptionally smart and he will likely be reaping some benefits from it in the not too distant future.
Oh, also supporting this argument is the fact that Chris Jericho isn't an idiot and doesn't think the UFC fixes fights or that his fights are "legit." He's also said that Ronda Rousey could beat him up and thus, at least logically, doesn't believe he can "embarrass" the men's UFC champion at a weight class 10 lbs. heavier than Rousey competes in. I suppose it could be just an admirable dedication to kayfabe but frankly this seems like a pretty obvious setup to me.
Also, on a related but separate note:
Man. Conor would get absolutely mauled by Brock, so his "slap the head off the whole roster" is definitely not accurate. Frankly, the WWE currently has several decorated amateur wrestlers like Dolph Ziggler and Jack Swagger who might be able to give McGregor problems considering their size advantage and wrestling credentials. And obviously McGregor would be a huge underdog to the jiu-jitsu game of The Undertaker.
Anyway, expect to see McGregor and Rousey in a mixed tag team match at next year's Wrestlemania. Maybe at the end Nate with come in with a steel chair and cost McGregor the match.
Glad to be back at it M.Rmy. Hope your Monday is as good as a Monday can be and see you tomorrow.
If you find something you'd like to see in the Morning Report, just hit me up on Twitter @JedKMeshew and let me know about it. Also follow MMAFighting on Instagram and add us on Snapchat at MMA-Fighting because we post dope things and you should enjoy them.