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Coach: Don't be shocked if Conor McGregor submits Jose Aldo, he's 'given hell to every black belt' in the gym

Conor McGregor's coach has high praise for his jiujitsu, saying that the 'very high-level' brown belt could very well submit Jose Aldo.

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Conor McGregor faces Jose Aldo in a highly anticipated bout on July, and most pundits have the bout close to even with the two highly adept strikers likely to go tit-for-tat on the feet. Odds have flipped flopped since the announcement of the bout, and McGregor currently stands as a slight underdog at +133.

McGregor's coach John Kavanagh wrote about the match up on The 42, and naturally he predicted that his fighter would win by stoppage during the early rounds:

"I expect the fight to go one of two ways: they’ll exchange shots and Aldo will go down in one round, or else Aldo will grapple his way into the second round — maybe even the third — but that will tire him because he’s not used to doing that. Then Conor will put him away."

That's not a surprising prediction on it's own, but what's eye catching is how Kavanagh believes McGregor stacks up to Aldo on the ground.

There are a lot of unknown variables, but conventional wisdom based on their credentials state that Aldo will have the distinct advantage on the ground. After all, Aldo started out as a decorated BJJ competitor, winning a world championship in 2004 as a brown belt and subsequently earning his black belt.

Aldo also holds two wins in BJJ against a grappling legend in 'Cobrinha', a 6-time world champion who is considered one of the best practitioners of the decade. Despite his credentials though, Kavanagh boldly states that he wouldn't be surprised if his pupil wins by submission:

Conor is a brown belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu now, and he’s given hell to every black belt he’s trained with.

...I’ll put it like this: it wouldn’t shock me at all if Conor were to submit Aldo, especially as Aldo starts to tire. Conor has a fantastic guillotine off his back and a really good triangle and armbar too, so there’ll be plenty of opportunities to submit Aldo when fatigue sets in and he starts to leave himself exposed.

That could be one that’s worth a few quid in the bookies. I’ve never seen Conor roll with a black belt and look out of place. Conor is a very high-level brown belt, not far off black-belt level at all, and at that level there’s not much difference between the two. Conor by submission, it could definitely happen.

One of McGregor's main training partners is Gunnar Nelson, a top notch UFC welterweight and a decorated BJJ blackbelt himself. Working with the Pan-Ams champ will surely help shore up his ground game, but will McGregor be able to submit Aldo to notch his first submission in the UFC and just the second in his career?

Sure, he can probably tire or punch Aldo enough to demote him back to a blue belt, but even then, finishing by submission doesn't seem like one of the more likely outcomes to me. If we look at past fights, McGregor's killer instincts have always shown him to favor strikes over subs when smelling blood. I doubt that's suddenly going to change during the biggest fight of his career, but I guess we will find out in 3 months.