McGregor deletes post after Nate Diaz slaps pal of UFC icon’s teammate

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Nate Diaz earned some short-lived plaudits from rival Conor McGregor after footage emerged of the Californian delivering a ‘Stockton Slap’ outside Madison Square Garden on Saturday. Diaz, 37, watched Israel Adesanya’s stunning middleweight title loss to Alex Pereira in the main event of UFC 281 before becoming embroiled in his own New York scuffle outside the venue.

Video shows Diaz and his entourage quarrelling with a group including McGregor’s manager, Audie Attar, and the Irishman’s long-time training partner Dillon Danis. A well-dressed Attar can be seen asking Diaz not to intensify the situation, with the pair even shaking hands as the former pleaded his “kids are here.”

A less fortunate member of Danis’ group earned Diaz’s ire, however, as the Brazilian jiu-jitsu expert aimed a middle finger in the unknown man’s face and exclaimed “I’ll f*** you up” before slapping him across the jaw. McGregor, 34, tweeted “Haha nice shot” in response to the video before swiftly deleting the post.

The reply will have come as a shock to fans unaccustomed to seeing much good will between McGregor and Diaz, who share one of the most infamous rivalries in mixed martial arts. Diaz submitted McGregor in March 2016 to inflict the first defeat of his UFC career before the Dubliner levelled the score in a majority-decision victory later that year.

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Danis had a dubious take on the melee and urged his Twitter followers to “ask Nate Diaz how that smack tastes,” even though footage clearly showed it was his acquaintance on the receiving end. The 29-year-old has long been associated with McGregor’s Dublin gym, SBG Ireland, though he hasn’t fought in MMA since improving his record to 2-0 at Bellator 222 in June 2019.

He was evidently incensed by how events played out in New York, too, and went on to claim he would beat Diaz in rapid fashion were the two to square off. “MMA or boxing i finish nate diaz in under 30 seconds or everyone who likes this gets 10k,” wrote the often criticised grappler.

Diaz and his entourage were recently recorded getting into a backstage dust-up with Jake Paul’s team shortly prior to The Problem Child’s boxing victory over UFC legend Anderson Silva. His rivalry with McGregor also saw tensions spill outside the Octagon, with the pair infamously flinging water bottles at one another during a press conference in the build-up to their August 2016 rematch.


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Dana White referred to Saturday’s MSG incident as “a shocker” after learning Diaz was involved in another altercation. “The thing was that, this event has been sold out for a while and Nate called last night wanting six tickets,” said the UFC president. “We didn’t have six tickets to give him, so he ended up figuring it out and got some seats. I went over and talked to him tonight, it’s all good. Every time they show up I expect something to happen, not much bothers me anymore at this point.”

Diaz (21-13) is now a free agent after completing his last UFC contract with a submission win over Tony Ferguson in September. McGregor (22-6) hasn’t fought since fracturing his leg during a second straight TKO defeat to Dustin Poirier in July 2021, though ‘The Notorious’ has continued to tease a comeback with regular training updates in recent months.

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