We had a pretty shocking outcome in UFC 257‘s main event this past weekend, as Dustin ‘The Diamond’ Poirier finished ‘The Notorious’ Conor McGregor via TKO midway through round two, avenging his defeat from over six years ago.
This marks the first defeat via strikes in McGregor’s mixed martial arts career, it was very surprising to see. Poirier came out blasting McGregor’s leg with those nasty calf kicks, and the beginning of the end was being spelled right then and there.
It got to the point where McGregor couldn’t move his feet because of how compromised his leg was, and he started eating some heavy punches considering, leading up to the TKO finish at 2:32 of round two.
This was by far the best performance of Poirier’s career, and certainly the biggest win of his career as well. As for ‘The Notorious’, he did state that he’d like to come back and remain an active talent, which is exciting to hear.
McGregor blamed the defeat on not expecting the calf kicks, as well as not being active. He came back last January in 2020 to TKO Donald Cerrone in just 40 seconds at UFC 246, but it’s evident, Cerrone isn’t the man he used to be, and Poirier is better than ever.
If he’d remained active and not taken these long, year-plus hiatuses, it’s possible McGregor would still be on top today. After being knocked out like that though, it’s hard to imagine if he’ll ever be able to regain that top status.
We saw how good he was when he came back after the first Nate Diaz fight, and we saw him come back better after the Khabib Nurmagomedov fight as well. McGregor was already motivated coming into this fight, but it seems he becomes much more motivated after losing.
This is why him boxing Floyd Mayweather Jr was such a bad idea. When your net worth goes from a few hundred-thousand to nearly one-hundred-million in the blink of an eye, it changes people. No one wants to wake up, drain their lungs, and get hit and kicked in their body and face every day when they don’t absolutely have to.
McGregor stated that he put in an immense amount of work trying to get his frame perfect for 155 lbs, but honestly, he looked small in comparison to when he fought Eddie Alvarez or Khabib Nurmagomedov. The Conor McGregor that showed up at UFC 257 looks like he could go back down to 145 lbs if he wanted to.
Chances are though, he’ll stay at 155 lbs. He wants to go on a lightweight run like he did at featherweight.
It’s clear McGregor is still chasing greatness, which is awesome to see, but at 32-years-old, turning 33 in July, having missed nearly four years of his athletic peak from 28 to 32, there’s a reason he didn’t come back quite the same.
Plus, he came out heavy on that lead leg in that boxing stance, which is very uncharacteristic of him. Normally, McGregor has a karate-like stance, perhaps Max Holloway yelling he’s the best boxer in the UFC during his fight a week prior made McGregor want to show off his boxing.
The thing is though, Poirier’s one of the better boxers in the sport himself, and he knows how to make adjustments. That’s what we saw on Saturday, a Poirier that made the proper adjustments to win the biggest fight of his life.
No matter what McGregor accomplishes from here, he’ll be considered a wasted talent considering he wasted so much of his prime years. However, that doesn’t mean he can’t still come back and win the title again. If anyone can do that, it’s Conor McGregor.
Who do we want to see ‘The Notorious’ in there with next? We could finally get the Rafael dos Anjos fight, the Nate Diaz trilogy is out there, and Tony Ferguson is also a very compelling name.
How Does Conor McGregor Rebound From UFC 257 Defeat To Dustin Poirier?
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