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Conor McGregor receives surprise coaching praise from UFC star after disastrous run on The Ultimate Fighter


Conor McGregor has received a glowing review for his coaching despite almost making unwanted history on The Ultimate Fighter 31.

‘Notorious’ struggled to find success with his team of prospects who appeared to be out of their depth against Michael Chandler’s group of UFC veterans on the reality TV show.

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McGregor struggled to be on the losing sideCredit: UFC

McGregor suffered seven consecutive defeats and was on the brink of becoming the first coach in the show’s 18-year history to lose every quarter-final bout.

Luckily, Rico DiSciullo spared his blushes by knocking out Hunter Azure.

The former dual-weight UFC champion was so happy to have swerved an embarrassing piece of TUF history he sprinted around the Octagon before letting DiSciullo drive his Lamborghini.

According to Stephen Thompson, who was a guest coach on the show, that moment summed up the bond between McGregor and his group of UFC wannabes.

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“It was awesome, we had a great time,” Wonderboy told talkSPORT.com about his Ultimate Fighter cameo.

“They were a team. MMA is a very selfish sport. When you go to the gym, everybody is about themselves and what they can get. When I stepped in there, the camaraderie of the team was what I was impressed with.

“Not only that but how caring Conor was with his team. As successful as that guy is, I could see how much he cared about his guys when they won and when they lost.

“That’s what I was impressed with the most. When he was training these guys, he was training them as if they’d been with him for years.

Thompson is one of the UFC's most talented strikers

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Thompson is one of the UFC’s most talented strikersCredit: Getty
He was impressed by McGregor's coaching ability

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He was impressed by McGregor’s coaching abilityCredit: @wonderboymma – instagram

“Me being a teacher here at the [Upstate Karate] gym, it’s a passion of mine, and seeing that passion in Conor was inspirational for me.

“Students, they don’t care how much you know, they all want to know how much you care. That was Conor all day, he cared about his team, and he made sure they were on point.”

DiSciullo lost in the next round and McGregor’s run in the competition only continued because his SBG Ireland teammate Brad Katona decided to leave Chandler’s squad to be with his actual coaches.

He ended up winning the bantamweight finale at UFC 292, but for all intents and purposes, McGregor only walked away from TUF 31 with a single win.

DiSciullo, a big underdog, came through for Team McGregor

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DiSciullo, a big underdog, came through for Team McGregorCredit: UFC
Things started to look better for the UFC superstar when Katona switched sides

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Things started to look better for the UFC superstar when Katona switched sidesCredit: @bradkatona – instagram

Thompson insists good coaching doesn’t always lead to positive results.

“It just happens sometimes, man,” he added.

“When you get these up-and-comers, who have never been a part of the big show, there’s a huge difference between the two.

“Chandler had the more experienced fighters, who have been at the big show. A few guys were in the UFC not too long ago and they were stepping in with guys who have never been in that spotlight before.

“As the show went on, the less experienced guys, they got better.

“They were a little bit more relaxed, a little bit more comfortable in the cage and you saw it.”

McGregor will soon end his lengthy injury layoff by fighting Chandler.

The Irishman recently shared a ‘leak’ that suggested they’ll headline UFC 296 on December 16, but nothing has been confirmed and Dana White claims McGregor is unlikely to return until 2024.





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