Conor McGregor seemed to be in traditional kind within the first spherical in opposition to Dustin Poirier in the principle occasion of UFC 257 Saturday evening, then every little thing modified.
McGregor received the opening spherical with stable punching and a few actually good work in opposition to the cage. However early within the second spherical it was clear Poirier’s leg kicks had a big impact on McGregor and had weakened his proper calf. These kicks opened issues up and Poirier struck, touchdown a couple of massive punches, together with a giant proper hook that despatched McGregor to the bottom. Referee Herb Dean jumped in to cease issues with 2:32 left within the spherical.
It was a disappointing consequence for McGregor, who the UFC has actually banked on massive time. After the combat he claimed the inactivity had harm him and that he deliberate to combat extra to stop that from occurring once more.
McGregor was returning to the octagon after a yr away. He final fought at UFC 246 on January 18, 2020. He scored a TKO win over Donald Cerrone in just 40 seconds that evening and was anticipating to combat a number of instances final yr, however these plans had been derailed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier than the Cerrone combat, McGregor hadn’t fought since October 6, 2018, when he was submitted by Khabib Nurmagomedov. That combat got here after a two-year layoff, throughout which he boxed Floyd Mayweather. All informed, for the reason that begin of 2017, McGregor has now had simply three fights within the UFC.
It stays to be seen what could possibly be subsequent for “The Infamous.” The 32-year-old has mentioned a return to boxing, however has three fights left on his UFC contract and appears to be centered on the octagon. He claims he is keen to combat seven times over the next 18 months if Dana White & Co. line fights up correctly. That sounds prefer it’s in keeping with his pre-COVID plans.
As for Poirier, he is probably in line for a title shot. He entered the evening because the No. 2 light-weight within the UFC and upped his inventory so much by beating McGregor. If Khabib Nurmagomedov does not return, a title combat with Justin Gaethje (No. 1 ranked light-weight) or a rubber match with McGregor could possibly be within the playing cards.