Previewing Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz with Weighted StrikeScore

Career StrikeScore looks at all strikes tracked by FightMetric. However, it does not have a way of weeding out anyone who has made their name smashing cans. Luckily, the FightMetric database only tracks UFC, Strikeforce, WEC and other major bouts. There will not be any contests from the Xplode Fight Series listed there. This selection bias actually increases the value of StrikeScore since only fights at a high level are taken into account. The fact that the UFC, for the most part, gradually increases the level of competition during a fighter's time in the promotion contributes as well.

With that being said, the StrikeScore formula should include an opponent adjustment. This is how the adjustments have been made. First, a StrikeScore is calculated for each bouts listed in the FightMetric database. Second, each one of the fighter's opponent is given a composite ranking. The composite ranking is an average of the fighter's peak Fight Matrix ranking and the Fight Matrix Quarterly Generated Historical Rankings that preceded the date of the bout in question. The composite ranking is then converated into a percent rank and used as an opponent adjustment factor. The following table shows the process for Conor McGregor.

OpponentStrikeScorePeakDatedAverageRank FactorAdj StrikeScore
Brimage382273229.50.421161
Holloway27246735.50.303583
Brandao290202924.50.519151
Poirier1501010100.803120
Siver377319110.784296
Mendes2272430.941214
Aldo7521110.98737
Average350    251

As you can see, McGregor's score drops rather significantly. He fought both Holloway and Siver when they were far from their perspective peaks. However, as you can see in the following charts, he is still the rightful favorite to be the better striker against Diaz.

Conor McGregor UFC Career StrikeScore
Nate Diaz Last 7 Fights StrikeScore