In the world of MMA, Conor McGregor’s name resonates as one of the most prominent figures. However, former welterweight title contender Stephen Thompson recently stated that McGregor is not a ‘true welterweight’.
After coaching against his opponent on season 31 of the TUF reality series, Conor McGregor will make his UFC comeback against Michael Chandler later this year. Thompson appeared as a guest coach for Team McGregor this season. One of the forthcoming episodes is likely to reveal the details of the upcoming McGregor vs Chandler match.
Thompson revealed that McGregor does not match the expectations of being a welterweight competitor. Despite UFC commentator Joe Rogan claiming McGregor weighed over 200 pounds, Thompson stated that McGregor reached his heaviest weight at around 185 pounds.
While talking to LowKickMMA, Thompson stated: “He’s not a true welterweight. Most of the guys I fight, they walk around over 200 pounds. He looks bigger but he’s like 185lb at his heaviest.”
Thompson acknowledged that McGregor possesses the ability to appear bigger than he actually is, especially when the cameras are on.
“He’s not a big big guy. We were with him and he knows when the camera turns on. It’s like telepathy. He turns on his persona. We took a picture together and we’re in our fighting stance and he inches forward so when you look at the picture, he looks so much bigger than me. He knows how to do it.”
While McGregor is known for his brash and outspoken personality, Thompson highlighted the stark contrast between McGregor’s public persona and his behavior away from the cameras.
He said: “All my experiences when there are no cameras on, he is a great guy. Very cordial, he will shake your hand. When the camera turns on, he turns into his persona.”
Following McGregor’s leg injury in his trilogy match against Dustin Poirier in July 2021, he had to limit his training to focus on his upper body while recovering. Consequently, McGregor gained weight during this period.
The weight gain has raised questions among fans and even his upcoming opponent Michael Chandler regarding which weight class McGregor will compete in for his upcoming match later this year.
The Irishman even suggested that he may go up to middleweight in a tweet from last December.
He wrote: “I’m going to give middleweight a go at some point 100 per cent. I’d be a big fridge at middleweight, but hot like oven same time, ye know yourself, catch it on ppv.”
“Don’t know tho. It’ll be hard work. Those rounds against those [middleweights/light-heavyweights], they were alternating fresh each round. I’ve put in psycho work doing this job over the years.”
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