Photo by Damon Martin

Dana White: ‘Conor McGregor Is One of the Most Underrated Fighters in the UFC’

UFC president Dana White argues that for all the fame and fortune Conor McGregor has amassed, he's still one of the most underrated fighters on the entire roster

Conor McGregor may have a ton of money and he’s undoubtedly the biggest draw in combat sports right now but that doesn’t mean he’s still not counted out before so many of his fights.

That’s according to UFC president Dana White, who says he counts McGregor as one of the most criminally underrated fighters on the entire roster.

The latest example of that attitude towards McGregor is his upcoming matchup against reigning lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.

McGregor is currently an underdog in the fight with so many critics who believe that he doesn’t stand a chance against the Russian wrecking machine, who absolutely mauls his opponents on the ground. It’s no secret that McGregor’s one glaring weakness during his UFC career have been ground specialists like what he faced in the first round against Chad Mendes — a fight he eventually won — or when he was submitted by Nate Diaz.

“It’s funny to say this because of how popular he is and what a huge star he is, but I think Conor McGregor is one of the most underrated fighters in the UFC,” White said about McGregor on the “UFC Unfiltered” podcast. “Every time Conor McGregor comes out to fight somebody new and it’s a wrestler or it’s whatever, this is the fight that Conor is going to lose. He said that he would knock out Jose Aldo the way he did it, he said he would do it in the first round.

“A lot of people picked him to lose to Eddie Alvarez because of Eddie Alvarez’s style and wrestling. Look how he looked there. Leading up to the fight when he fought Chad Mendes — Chad Mendes is a wrestler, everybody believed that he would do that. Then after [Conor] won everybody said that Chad Mendes didn’t have enough time to train for it. The list goes on and on.”

While it’s likely that the odds for his upcoming fight at UFC 229 will shift once the Irish faithful start making their way to Las Vegas with money pouring in on McGregor, that doesn’t mean the outspoken former two-division champion will be a popular pick on fight night.

It’s for that reason why White says McGregor remains one of the most underrated fighters on the roster despite a long list of opponents he was never supposed to beat yet counts them as wins on his resume.

“I think because Conor is so popular and his personality everything, I think he’s completely underrated,” White stated.

McGregor will try to prove everybody wrong once again when he steps into the Octagon to face Nurmagomedov on Oct. 6 in Las Vegas in the UFC 229 main event.


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Damon Martin is a veteran mixed martial arts journalist who has been covering the industry since 2003 with bylines on FOX Sports, CNN, Bleacher Report and numerous other outlets.

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