Three weeks ago Artem Lobov saw his long time friend and training partner Conor McGregor suffer a gruesome injury in the main event of UFC 264. During that fight, versus Dustin Poirier, the Irishman broke his tibia, which lead to a TKO loss.
In the lead-up to the fight, as well as immediately afterwards, McGregor resorted to death threats and accusations directed at Poirier’s wife, going as far as to claim that the Poiriers would be murdered in their sleep.
During his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan, McGregor claimed he was winning the fight prior to the injury. He also said this “wasn’t over” and made more wild claims directed at Poirier’s wife.
McGregor’s head coach John Kavanagh has blamed a rush of hormones and Joe Rogan for the words McGregor spoke during the interview. Lobov stopped short of blaming the veteran UFC commentator for the comments, but did say that he felt that the interview should not have happened.
“It was a mad situation,” Lobov said to MMA Fighting. “I mean, look at the way Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman were after his injury happened. … [McGregor] was still sitting up and I do think interviews shouldn’t even happen in that scenario. I’m surprised that it did happen. It shouldn’t have happened, but it is what it is in a way. You have to move on and live to fight another day. Now it’s time to heal, train, fix mistakes, and go back again. That’s it.”
Lobov also said that he expects McGregor to make a full recovery, as he did when he suffered an ACL injury during a fight with Max Holloway back in 2013.
“This is gonna be a process of healing and recovery first and then slowly build it back up because then you’re going to have to build some confidence in it. But you know, after something like this, it’s still going to take you some time, I would imagine, to start healing and kicking with it. It’s going to be a slow process, but I remember when Conor came back from his ACL injury, he’s done that twice, he did it better than anyone before him. I have no doubt it’s going to be the same result this time.”
Lobov gained entry to the UFC through an appearance on The Ultimate Fighter: Team McGregor vs. Team Faber in 2015. During that show McGregor gave his pal every opportunity to succeed. However, ‘The Russian Hammer’ fell just short of winning the show, losing to Ryan Hall in the season finale.
Lobov went on to have a seven fight career with the UFC, highlighted by a thrilling brawl with Cub Swanson to headline UFC Nashville in 2017. Lobov was cut from the UFC in 2018 with a record of 2-5 in the promotion.
Since then he has fought in Bare Knuckle Fighting Championships beating both ex UFC fighter Jason Knight and former WBA welterweight champion Pauli Malignaggi. This weekend he will fight former Olympic silver medal winning boxer Denys Berinchyk for the Ukrainian bare knuckle promotion Mahatch FC.