McGregor finished Mendes in the second round by technical knockout to capture the interim featherweight title, but he had to overcome some adversity along the way.
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McGregor’s takedown defense was put to the test. He defended several attempts to get him to the ground, but Mendes was able to put him on his back in both rounds. He delivered a steady stream of punches and elbows, opening up a cut over McGregor’s right eye.
“I ate everything that he had. I don’t feel anything when they hit me, nothing. He caught me above the eye with an elbow from guard, but his shots from guard were – I was remaining calm. I knew what was happening. I was eating him alive from bottom and I was talking to him. Anytime we scrambled back to the feet I’d go to the body,” said the newly crowned champion during the UFC 189 Post Show.
“I felt like I dominated the fight to be honest with you,” added the Irishman.
On their feet, McGregor did dominate. He targeted the Mendes’ and utilized his reach advantage. He set a relentless pace and ultimately knocked Mendes down with a combination to finish the fight.
“I knew my power would be too much, my pressure would be too much for him. And that’s what happened.”