We caught up with some of the biggest names on the Cage Warriors roster to get their predictions on this weekend’s huge UFC246 clash between former Cage Warriors champion Conor “Notorious” McGregor and Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone.
What do the fighters think?
Paddy “The Baddy” Pimblett: “When it comes to this fight, it’s hard to pick against McGregor and his boxing because Cowboy is a slow starter. If Cerrone can make it past the first round then yeah, maybe he can see if he can wear him down and land the headkick. That’s the only way I can see Cerrone winning. But I think Conor’s going to KO or TKO him.”
Jack Cartwright – Bantamweight Champion: “I think it’s a good exciting fight and could go one of two ways. Conor could stop him in the first 7 minutes, or cause a lot of damage, or Cerrone will stop him late if he can withstand the initial onslaught from McGregor. I don’t think he’ll be able to take the punishment and I think Conor will take him out first round, most likely with that straight left hand.”
Cartwright himself is no stranger to a knockout win, having finished 2 opponents in 1 night in last year’s bantamweight tournament. He headlines Cage Warriors Manchester on March 7th.
Manchester is calling…
And we know one man who has his eyes on our first show of the New Year.
Let’s recap Jack Cartwright’s double knockouts at CW Unplugged 2! 😳 pic.twitter.com/LOzstqzzpT
— Cage Warriors (@CageWarriors) November 24, 2019
Mads Burnell – Featherweight Champion: “When the fight first got announced, my initial thought was that Cerrone had a pretty good shot. But then I sat down and watched 3 of Conors fights and 3 of Cerrones fights. I think Cowboy is gangster as ****, drinking Budweiser, fighting and driving Harley Davidsons all day, and I’ll be rooting for him… but I think Conor will take this one.”
Mason Jones: “I think McGregor’s going to stop Cowboy in the first round. McGregor looks really fluid, and Cowboy looks really heavy on his feet. Cowboy really struggles with powerful southpaws. I think it’s going to be over within 3 minutes!”
Jones also utilises fluid striking to wear down opponents and force the finish. Check out one of ‘The Dragon’s’ best finishes before he returns at Cage Warriors London this March!
— Cage Warriors (@CageWarriors) January 2, 2019
Scott Malone: “McGregor will pour it on him in the first, as Cowboy is a slow starter. But I reckon Cerrone will survive the storm and end up submitting him in the third round.”
James Webb: “McGregor v Cerrone is a great fight. I think if Conor can push the pace early, then we may see a finish from him before the second round is out. On the other hand, Cerrone has good wrestling, and lots of his knock outs have come from those level changes. If the fight gets into later rounds I see Cerrone maybe taking him with pressure.”
Rhys McKee: “I think it’s a great fight, and a very different fight at 170 than it could have been at 155. I think McGregor’s looking better than he ever has. That being said, Cerrone’s a tougher test at 170 than the weight below. But my prediction is McGregor with a second round TKO.”
Striking accuracy is one of Conor McGregor’s strongest attributes, and also a key factor in Rhys McKee’s latest win via TKO at CW110.
— Cage Warriors (@CageWarriors) November 9, 2019
Dean Trueman: “For me it’s a tough one to pick a winner. Cowboy looks like he will have a slight size advantage and possibly strength advantage. Both fighters have great stand up skills. But I think McGregor will land a fight-changing shot and take advantage of it.”
Jai Herbert – Lightweight Champion: “I think McGregor gets the win by the 2nd round. But if he doesn’t finish it by then, I think Cerrone will take it later on!”
Ian Garry: “I’ll start off by saying I’m delighted to see Conor back. When he’s back in business it brings more eyes to the sport, and he’s the reason I started. I hope he’s back to the old Conor, and if he is, it’s going to be a bad night for Cerrone.
“Conor is just a different level to everyone else when he’s in the right mindset. Look at what he did on the original rise to stardom – no one stood in his way. I think he needs this, and wants to be back.
“For me, I can’t look past Conor. I think it’s going to be a first or second round KO, him KO’ing Cerrone stiff… I wouldn’t be surprised if he made it look effortless.”
Fans and critics have drawn comparisons between Irishman Ian Garry and a younger Conor McGregor, due to ‘The Future’s exciting style and confidence in and out of the cage. He fights next at Cage Warriors London on March 20th.
🇮🇪 “We’re going to bring this back to the top, and show everyone that respect and honour is in this game.”@iangarryMMA‘s Unplugged 2 interview was a touch of class 👏 #CWIreland pic.twitter.com/JLtpHeZFgq
— Cage Warriors (@CageWarriors) September 13, 2019
Saturday night has the answers!