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13th Nov 2016

Conor McGregor’s coach’s prediction about the Alvarez fight was eerily precise

He's the new Mystic Mac...

Ben Kenyon

Conor McGregor is known for his freakish ability to predict how and when he will finish his fights.

He famously called his lightning-quick KO of former featherweight king Jose Aldo, which took him all of 13 seconds.

His clairvoyant-like predictions earned him the moniker Mystic Mac (well, he made it up and the nickname has stuck to be fair).

But his gift for seeing into the future was apparently slightly off key coming into his historic headline fight for the lightweight world title against champion Eddie Alvarez.

The Irishman had confidently predicted that he would finish the Philadelphia native inside one round in the run up to their Madison Square Garden bout at UFC 205.

It looked like The Notorious was going to prove his own prediction right, knocking the 155lb champion down three times with that ‘death touch’ left hand – only for the durability of Alvarez to keep him hanging on to the end of the round.

He wasn’t far off to be fair to him, after downing Alvarez in the second round with a powerful and precise four-punch combo on the eight minute mark that put him into the UFC history books as the first man to simultaneously hold two belts at the same time.

However McGregor’s trainer John Kavanagh was asked to make a similar prediction about how he saw the fight going…and compared to McGregor’s, it was eerily precise.

The SBG coach was a guest on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Hour show during fight week and gave his thoughts on how he saw the fight going down.

Not only did Kavanagh predict the round, the fact that McGregor would KO him but he also predicted the exact minute to within four seconds that he recorded the victory (there was 1:56 of left of the second round, if you’re asking).

While we didn’t see the tenacious and smothering wrestling and grappling game Alvarez usually brings, Kavanagh even noted that it takes ‘one break’ from being pinned on the fence to strike the death blows…which if you watch the replays, is exactly what happened.

Here’s what he said in full:

”I will go second round. I do think round one will be a lot on the fence. It’s an exhausting style. Especially the way Conor can defend himself on the fence without really relying on muscle. He relies on posture, which is not tiring. 

”It just takes one break. I can see round one being just that style – being pushed to the fence and held there.

”But then round two they start separated again. The shot won’t be quite as fast, the muscles won’t be quite as energetic and he’s a slippery customer to try and hold for that length of time. 

”I think around the eighth minute it will happen.”

What was also pretty prescient from the Dublin-based coach was how he echoed that famous old Mike Tyson quote ‘everyone has a gameplan until they get punched in the mouth’.

”It happens so often, that when they do go in there, the talk goes out the window and they get cracked with a couple of clean jabs and then it quickly becomes head down and get back to what you know, what got you there and what you’re good at – for Eddie that’s that mauling, grappling style that he did against Pettis.”

Alvarez admitted his gameplan went straight out of the window during the fight. He had planned to mix up kicks from the outside with wrestling and keep boxing – which is clearly McGregor’s strength – to a minimum.

He landed some solid inside leg kicks early on which didn’t let McGregor settle into a rhythm, but from the moment he was dropped by that left hand, he looked in a whole world of trouble and that plan that he had been working on to beat the Irishman went up in flames.

He told Fight Network after the loss:

‘I fought a bad fight. The idea wasn’t to go in and box and stand in front of him. We started throwing kicks and the kicks were successful – I would have kicked more – and we didn’t wrestle enough.

‘The idea was to go in there and wrestle – wrestle a guy who likes to box and I didn’t do that and I’m not quite sure why.’

The lesson in all this is, get your money on John Kavangh’s predictions next time out.

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