Garbrandt: I’d Knock Conor Out
Speaking with ESPN’s Five Rounds podcast recently, Cody Garbrandt laid what he wants his 2018 to look like, which would include a fight with Conor McGregor. Garbrandt says that he would love to box McGregor in the future and that he would “knock the f**k out” of the UFC lightweight champion
“I think going in a boxing ring with Conor would be great, or in MMA. . . No ill will towards the guy but I actually believe I’m a better boxer. I feel like I’m one of the best boxers in the UFC.”
“I’ll go in there and knock Conor the f**k out in a boxing ring, just to be honest. There’s no difference, southpaw, orthodox, that guy could come out and fight on his hands for all I give a f**k. I would knock him out, that’s it. I have the best boxing in the game, in the UFC, and I’m ready to showcase it on another level.”
McGregor lucrative bout with Floyd Mayweather this summer opened the floodgates for MMA fighters to begin seeking their own excursions into boxing. Garbrandt started out as an amateur boxer before fully making his profession in MMA, and is regarded as having some of the best boxing in the UFC already. His dominant decision victory of Cruz was done with his boxing ability more than anything.
Before anything involving McGregor can take place, Garbrandt has to settle unfinished business with former teammate and training partner T.J. Dillashaw at UFC 217. The bantamweight champion says that his first title defense will be a stepping stone to elevate him to even greater opportunities, either McGregor or other top fighters, be they in MMA or in boxing.
“I’ve got T.J. ahead of me. He’s a great adversary, great opponent to level up, to go to that next level with a great masterclass performance . . . I’m excited to go in there and take out T.J., and whoever else – Mighty Mouse, Conor. You can give me top boxers, Adrien Broner, Mikey Garcia, all those guys. I would love to get in the ring with them. 130 pounds up to 147 pounds, I’ll step in the ring with any of them.”
That is a list of some of the top fighters in the world in either sport and even more so than McGregor, one person among that stands out to Garbrandt as the obvious next step for him after he dispatches Dillashaw at UFC 217: the UFC flyweight champion and a man many consider to be the best fighter in the history of the sport, Demetrious Johnson.
“I think it’s the fight to make after I demolish T.J., to go down to 125 pounds and become a two-weight world champion. . . That would be strictly business for me to go down there and do that, no ill will towards Demetrious . . . That just would be for my career and my legacy – and for him too. He needs a big fight. He needs someone [to fight].
“I can easily make 125 pounds. I don’t walk around too heavy and I think that would be a great fight . . . Dominick Cruz and T.J. can fight for an interim title, I’ll go down to 125, and then beat up the winner of that. That’s how I see it playing out.”