Conor McGregor says he is “over” fighting Nate Diaz again.
If the trilogy happens, great, McGregor said. But according to the former UFC two-division champion, it does not have to.
“If [Diaz] does not want the trilogy bout, no problem,” McGregor told ESPN on Thursday. “I don’t blame him. Look at the fights, look at the damage. They were intense bouts. That does not matter. It does not matter now. It’s time for me to just get back in.”
McGregor and Diaz were involved in one of the most lucrative rivalries in UFC history in 2016. They fought twice and the series is tied one apiece. Diaz, a major underdog who stepped up on short notice, submitted McGregor at UFC 196 in March of that year. In the rematch at UFC 202 that August, McGregor won a razor-thin majority decision in what was one of the best fights of the year.
Both fights headlined two of the highest-selling UFC pay-per-views in company history.
McGregor was the UFC featherweight champion at the time, but both bouts were contested at welterweight. After the rematch, McGregor went on to win the lightweight belt.
Up until this past weekend, Diaz hadn’t fought since the McGregor rematch. He returned to action at UFC 241 in Anaheim against former 155-pound champ Anthony Pettis, dominating him en route to a unanimous decision win. The fight was at 170 pounds.
After the victory, Diaz called out surging welterweight contender Jorge Masvidal, who was at the event. Masvidal said afterward he was interested in the fight, but is adamant he gets paid what he’s worth following a viral knockout of Ben Askren in July.
Diaz made little mention of McGregor after the Pettis win; his focus was on Masvidal. That did not surprise the Irishman.
“Nate is a crafty individual,” McGregor said. “I did not feel like I was being boxed out. I boxed Nate out in reality.”