Even when McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) gave him a prime chance backstage at “The Time is Now” press conference, Duffy (17-3 MMA, 4-2 UFC) took a subtler approach to reminding the Irish champ who was boss.
Right before McGregor took to the stage to harrass Jose Aldo (26-4 MMA, 8-3 UFC) in advance of their title unifier at UFC 194, Duffy said the then-interim featherweight champ started in on him.
“We were arguing backstage before we came out,” he told MMAjunkie Radio. “It was just a few words back and forth.”
According to Duffy, McGregor asked him, “How’s the Canadian?” It was a reference to Duffy’s training in Montreal with the famed Tristar Team.
Duffy replied, “How’s No. 2?” Or, in other words, how’s the No. 2 fighter in Ireland?
“Then he was cracking up,” Duffy said. “He was saying, ‘Enjoy my hard work.’ But I don’t mention his name. I get asked about him in interviews, but it’s not my style. I don’t want to bring it up. So I just told him I would enjoy it.
“I’m not going to get drawn into all that crack. It’s not my scene.”
Quite obviously, that’s where he and McGregor differ. There’s no arguing McGregor’s approach has been wildly successful. The Irish champ talked his way into opportunity after opportunity until the ultimate one, a boxing match with Floyd Mayweather that netted him over $100 million dollars.
The Irish champ fully embraces trash talk as a means of advancing his career. Duffy, on the other hand, takes satisfaction in knowing he’s a world-class fighter, one who just happened to humble McGregor when they met in 2010.
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