Conor McGregor's sparring partner reveals what it's like to face the UFC star who is a 'different beast' in the octagon

CONOR McGREGOR'S training partner has lifted the lid out what it is like to spar the Irishman.

Bellator bantamweight Frans Mlambo has been in McGregor's camp since The Notorious debuted in the UFC in 2013.

And Mlambo has been a trusted sparring partner out of their Straight Blast Gym in Dublin, headed up by their head coach John Kavanagh.

The 29-year-old revealed expert counter-puncher McGregor is a master at controlling range and adjusting to his opponents game plan.

But that is nothing compared to what the UFC star, 32, is capable of doing once the octagon door closes and the first bell rings.

Mlambo told SunSport: "I always say he's always very good at reading what you're doing.

"If you switch up your game mid-sparring he's very good at reading what you're doing.

"I've been sparring him for years, but when you see him in fights he's just a different beast.

"You get a load of fighters who shine in the gym, he shines when you're out there."

McGregor ruled as featherweight king within two years and by 2016 won the lightweight title to become the first UFC champion to hold two belts at the same time.

The southpaw then put his UFC career on hold in 2017 to crossover to boxing where he lost against Floyd Mayweather in ten rounds.


It was a fight Mlambo helped McGregor prepare for, but in 2018 The Notorious returned to the UFC.

He was again beaten, submitting to Khabib Nurmagomedov in a grudge match that sold a UFC record 2.4m pay-per-views.

McGregor did not fight again until this January when he stepped up to welterweight and knocked out Donald Cerrone in 40 seconds.

Despite retiring in June following frustrations on the sidelines, he is close to agreeing a rematch with Dustin Poirier, who he beat in 2014.

Depending on what weight the fight takes place at will decide whether Mlambo will again spar McGregor.

"I've been sparring him for years, but when you see him in fights he's just a different beast.

As the 9-5 contender was only a regular fixture in McGregor's camp during his iconic run as featherweight and lightweight ruler.

Mlambo explained: "I was kind of in his camp when he was at featherweight.

"I'm still a bantamweight, so it probably doesn't make as much sense to use me. 

"It would make real good sense if it was someone who presented just speed, then I'd probably be getting the call. 

"I haven't seen him in more than a year, but that's understandable."

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