It’s almost time for the biggest rematch in the history of mixed martial arts. Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz headline UFC 202 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday night, running back their fight from less than six months ago.
With Diaz accepting their first fight on just 11 days’ notice at UFC 196, he was considered a heavy underdog against McGregor, who was unbeaten in UFC. But with the fight at welterweight, a 25-pound increase for the featherweight champion, McGregor was unable to knock out the naturally bigger Diaz, tapping out to a rear-naked choke in the second round.
This time around, it appears to be anyone’s fight. Ever since the rematch was agreed upon, McGregor has been the slightest of favorites. That remains the same on the day of the bout.
The fighters have nearly come to blows multiple times this week before stepping inside the octagon. Wednesday’s press conference ended with both McGregor and Diaz tossing water bottles at each other. At Friday’s weigh-in, where McGregor came in at 168 pounds and Diaz tipped the scales at 170.5 pounds, the two fighters had to be separated.
“He should’ve killed me when he had the chance, because now I’m back and I’m going to kill you and your whole f****** team,” McGregor said at the end of Friday’s weigh-in.
UFC 202 officially starts at 10 p.m. ET on Saturday night, but McGregor and Diaz almost certainly won’t do battle until early Sunday morning. The actual start time of the fight might not be until close to 12:30 a.m. ET, though each of McGregor’s last two fights, including his UFC 196 matchup against Diaz, didn't begin until shortly before 1 a.m. ET.
No matter when the fight begins, it's not expected to last very long. The odds favor the fight ending before the conclusion of the third round.