Edson Barboza spent nearly a decade in the UFC’s lightweight division, so it is natural for him to have his opinions about the current state of the division, especially when there was just a blockbuster 155-pound bout that the world just tuned in to watch. One half of this contest was “The Notorious” Conor McGregor, someone who is considered nearly if not every bit as skilled as he is famous.
Well, that actually depends on who you ask. Some argue that Conor McGregor is overrated and that, despite his achievements, his talent does not come close to the same radius as his fame. Then there are some who argue that McGregor’s skills are underrated, underappreciated, and overcriticized. In the unique case of Edson Barboza, he seems to be an extreme case of the former, believing that Dustin Poirier exposed that McGregor is no better than basically the entire UFC roster.
“He’s looking great. He’s looking great,” Barboza said of Dustin Poirier in an interview with MMA Junkie. “I saw him training every single day here in Florida. Man, talk about the best team in the world, American Top Team. He has the best coach around him, and he showed to everybody he’s one of the best in the world and showed everybody that Conor is like everybody, you know?
“He’s a great fighter, of course, but he’s not better than 99% of the fighters in the UFC,” Barboza continued. “I feel everybody’s on the same level. You can win; you can lose; but he showed proof for everybody: Conor’s just one more guy in the UFC.”
One flaw in Barboza’s claim that cannot be overlooked is the fact that nowhere close to 99% of the UFC roster have been able to win UFC gold, let alone gold in two weight classes, but perhaps Barboza is arguing strictly about present-day Conor McGregor. Either way, even those who agree with Barboza would have to admit that this is certainly a hot take the likes of which 99% of fighters would love to prove wrong when met by such valuations.
What are your thoughts on Edson Barboza’s opinion that Conor McGregor is no better than 99% of the UFC roster?