Dustin Poirier had control of his trilogy fight against Conor McGregor for more than two thirds of the first round. After weathering a few good leg kicks and a sharp left hand from the Irishman, Poirier spent most of the round using ground and pound to wear McGregor down.
McGregor did attempt a guillotine, but it never really threatened Poirier. By the time they got back up on their feat to close the first round, two judges had it scored 10-8.
The fight ended in tragedy for McGregor, as he broke his foot in the closing seconds of the first round while he was stepping backwards, forcing a doctor’s stoppage before the second round began.
McGregor, who had been absolutely classless heading into the fight, garnered little sympathy from a lot of people. He went as far as insulting Poirier’s wife, and even said he would kill him in the ring.
While his vitriol had served him well in the past, his antics did little in the way of getting into Poirier’s head this time around. Instead, ‘Diamond’ Dustin showed great composure in the five minutes that the rubber match lasted.
While Poirier showed clear composure in the actual fight, he wasn’t afraid to share his thoughts about McGregor afterwards. He even took the time to mock his opponent’s ring strut, and tell everyone who was booing him in the crowd to kiss his ass.
McGregor, who’s normally been gracious in defeat, had no ability to keep his emotions in check. Because of his history of being an asshole, there was no shortage of people celebrating his defeat as well, including former lightweight champ Rafael Dos Anjos.
The way today’s fight ended, at least to me, signals the end of McGregor as an elite fighter. He might come back after a long rehab, but the weaknesses in his game, from his bad submission defense, to his gas tank, to his difficulties adjusting when people are able to handle his crafty striking, aren’t going to go away.
He’s fought in the octagon seven times since 2016, and has a record of 3-4 in that span. He also lost his boxing fight with Floyd Mayweather in 2017.
McGregor has made an insane amount of money in that time, and there’s little incentive for him to continue fighting, other than his ego and a desire to prove to himself that he can still compete at the highest levels.
However, based on how he lost both fights to Poirier, and the way that Khabib Nurmagomedov mauled him in 2018, it’s a stretch to think that ‘Mystic Mac’ will ever be in a position to challenge for a title again.
It was a hell of a ride while it lasted, but the Conor McGregor show is officially over. He’ll never regain that air of invincibility again, even if he comes back and strings together a few wins. Poirier deserves all the credit for his win, and let’s hope he finally gets the title shots and wins it.