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Eddie Alvarez reveals what he would’ve done differently as UFC champ and for Conor McGregor bout

Eddie Alvarez gives an honest take on his short-lived run as a UFC champion and his performance against Conor McGregor at UFC 205.

Eddie Alvarez eats a left hand from Conor McGregor during their UFC 205 title fight in 2016.
Eddie Alvarez eats a left hand from Conor McGregor during their UFC 205 title fight in 2016.
Set Number: SI612 TK1

You can include Eddie Alvarez’s name as one of the most accomplished fighters in recent MMA history. He’s held titles in different promotions including the UFC and has put on some of the most memorable performances that fans will always look back on.

As a UFC champion, “The Underground King” had a short stint. After winning the 155-pound belt against Rafael dos Anjos, he failed to defend it against Conor McGregor at UFC 205.

Alvarez recently appeared on The Weighing In podcast with Josh Thomson and “Big John” McCarthy where he discussed some of his regrets. First, he touched on what he could’ve done differently during his UFC title run.

“I would’ve took time off and really soaked that in. I didn’t soak it in. It was like another title for me,” he said. “Like MFC, Bellator, any other one. It was like, ‘Great, you got it. Now, what are you gonna do?’

“I should’ve been more grateful for the position I was in and I should’ve soaked it in and really enjoyed it. And then came back passionately and gotten to a training camp and fought that way.

“I don’t feel like I had a lot of gratitude. I felt like the belt was like a burden and not a blessing. I’m like, ‘Oh man, now I got to do this and I’ve got to go do this interview…’. I didn’t want to do any of that. I didn’t look at it as a blessing. I should’ve had more gratitude about the position I was in.”

At UFC 205, McGregor looked like the ultimate world-beater who put on a dominant striking performance. For Alvarez, it may have been one of the most difficult losses he had to deal with.

“I left Madison Square Garden, I was crushed. I remember we drove in a van back to Philadelphia, and I cried like a little kid. Like a child. From New York, almost all the way to Philadelphia. I cried like I died inside,” he candidly said.

“Everything I did, everything I freaking worked for. I got myself to this largest stage and I did that? That’s not what you’re capable of and you got yourself on this stage for everyone to see you. And when you don’t put your best foot forward and you don’t have your best night, it’s like ‘F—k, man.’ It was brutal.”

Alvarez says it took him two months to get over the McGregor loss as he was also slapped with the reality of his chosen profession.

“It took me a long time to get past (it). Two months to just get over, and realize like, ‘I’m in fist fighting.’ That’s what I came up with. At the end of it all, I’m like ‘Why and what could I have done… at the end of it all, you fistfight, man.’ It’s volatile. Bad shit happens. You can be as prepared as you want, you’re in fistfighting. Shit goes down, it could go bad quickly.

“You hope, you prepare properly, and you go in there and you hope for the best. But sometimes it doesn’t (happen).”

The 37-year-old Alvarez now fights for Singapore-based promotion ONE Championship after he and fellow ex-champion Demetrious Johnson were traded for Ben Askren in late 2018. He last fought in April against Ok Rae Yoon and lost via decision.

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