The trash-talking leading up to UFC 264 felt like classic Conor McGregor. His entrance had that classic “Notorious” one feel. It looked at first that his skills were back and better than ever. A Dustin Poirier flurry and unfortunate circumstances halted all of his momentum, however.
In the main event of UFC 264 in Las Vegas, Nevada, Poirier defeated McGregor via TKO. It wasn’t the ending either fighter expected, as McGregor appeared to have broken his leg towards the end of the first round. Dana White confirmed that McGregor suffered a lower tibia fracture.
— UFC (@ufc) July 11, 2021
— UFC (@ufc) July 11, 2021
The fight started off hot right away, as McGregor went for multiple spin kicks. He landed a few to the right leg of Poirier, a callback to when Poirier beat him at UFC 257. Those kicks might have been the start of the end for McGregor, as Poirier said he felt a crack after one of those kicks. Poirier would land leg kicks of his own and then they both decided to trade shots.
“He fractured it on one of the checks at the beginning of the fight,” Poirier stated after the fight. “Then it broke on a punch for sure… When I pointed at him at the beginning of the fight, that’s when I checked a good kick… I felt something.”
Poirier put McGregor up against the cage but McGregor tried to take him down and put him in the guillotine. Fighting Poirier on the floor, however, was a bad strategy as Poirier took over and hit multiple elbows to the face of McGregor. The latter would hit a few of his own, including a kick, but Poirier would continue to land vicious shots. The fight went back down to the floor and Dustin would not allow McGregor to have any momentum.
Both tried trading shots towards the end of the round but missed. It looked as if Poirier was on the verge of winning, pushing McGregor into the cage with hard shots, putting him down to the floor. By the end of the round, it was revealed that McGregor hurt himself, right after both missed their shots.
It appeared as though Poirier had the momentum before the injury.
— Jim (@MMA_Jim) July 11, 2021
An incensed McGregor emphatically stated that it wasn’t over between him and Poirier.
“This is not over,” McGregor stated. “If I have to take this outside with him, it’s on outside, I don’t give a bollocks.”
Since returning to action in 2018, McGregor is now 1-3 in his last four fights.
According to UFC.com, Poirier passed Edson Barboza and Melvin Guillard for the most knockouts (8) in UFC lightweight history. Poirier, who has won three in a row, is expected to face UFC Lightweight Champion Charles Oliveira for the title sometime this year.