Icelandic UFC fighter Gunnar Nelson is a long-time training partner of Conor McGregor and in a new interview he reveals that he’s urged the Irish ace to move up to the lightweight division sooner rather than later.
“He does a big cut,” Nelson tells Submission Radio of the efforts McGregor goes through to make the featherweight limit. “He doesn’t like it and I don’t think he’s going to do it much longer. I think he’s going to move up. I think he wants to move up. I don’t blame it. I wouldn’t be able to this cut too many times. It definitely takes it out of you. There’s no doubt.
“He has a lot of energy and he’ll toughen through it and fight really well even though he does that cut. I just think, looking ahead, this isn’t good for your health. I don’t think he should do it many more times and I’ve told him that. That’s my opinion.”
It’s interesting to hear Nelson’s thoughts and it has to be said that McGregor does look painfully drawn at the weigh-ins for his fights at 145lbs, and indeed even in the Octagon a day later against Chad Mendes in July the Irish star still looked a little gaunt.
Speaking of which, Nelson also backed up a recent claim from McGregor that he’d badly injured his knee in the lead-up to his interim title bout with Mendes at UFC 189 back in July.
“He couldn’t walk for a while. He couldn’t wrestle or grapple for a long time in the camp. He basically just did rounds of boxing and checking the kicks. He showed up on one leg. That’s basically what happened.”
As for Nelson himself, he’s booked to fight Demian Maia at UFC 194, just a few fights before McGregor takes on Jose Aldo in the main event on December 12th in Las Vegas and will be looking to build upon his current 5-1 record inside the Octagon.