Wednesday’s UFC 196 pre-fight press conference featuring UFC featherweight champion Conor McGregor (pictured) and Nate Diaz was everything the several hundred fans who packed the UFC Gym in Torrance, California expected, and more.
McGregor showed up on McGregor time, roughly 35 minutes late, per usual. F-bombs were in abundance, by both parties. McGregor boasted about his fat paychecks, while taking credit for finally making Diaz a millionaire by granting him this fight. McGregor threw out the first subtle slight by referring to Nate as, “Nick’s little bro.”
And then Diaz started hurling unfounded accusations of steroid abuse.
“Everybody’s on steroids. The whole UFC. Everybody,” Diaz stated, as he looked over at McGregor on the other side of the podium.
“Your teammate Gil [Melendez ] and Jake [Shields] were two caught on steroids, not me,” McGregor angrily responded.
“And you, and [UFC lightweight champ Rafael] dos Anjos and [Anthony] Pettis and everybody,” Diaz continued.
“Not me. I’m not on no steroids,” an angry McGregor insisted. “What the f**k you talking about? Your two teammates were on steroids. Your boys, the Skrap Pack. Remember that? Did you know they were taking that stuff?”
“You’re on steroids,” Diaz stated.
“Sure I am. I’m just an animal,” McGregor said to close out the heated exchange.
Melendez is currently serving a yearlong suspension after testing positive for elevated levels of testosterone following June’s split decision defeat to Eddie Alvarez at UFC 188. Shields took a banned diuretic prior to meeting Ed Herman at UFC 150.
After knocking out Jose Aldo in December to unify the UFC featherweight title, McGregor hit the weights and is visibly buffer in preparation for what was to be a battle for Rafael dos Anjos’ lightweight belt at UFC 196.
McGregor has never flunked a drug test during his professional career and has been outspoken about his peers who have cheated.
McGregor and Diaz battle in a welterweight affair March 5 at UFC 196.