Poirier and McGregor will settle their rivalry by facing off in a trilogy bout at UFC 264 on July 10. With the series even at one a piece, it’s not just bragging rights the duo are fighting for, with the winner expected to face Charles Oliveira for the title.
For McGregor, the stakes are even higher, according to Dustin Poirier. In an interview with ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, the 32-year-old said that McGregor will be fighting not only to prove he’s still a title contender, but for relevancy.
“It’s me trying to show that January wasn’t a fluke, him trying to show that he’s still relevant, that he still wants to be the world champion at 155 pounds,” said Poirier. “Because I was pushing to fight at a heavier weight. I wanted to fight 170. I didn’t want to cut down to ’55 again. But he wants to do it at ’55, UFC wants it at ’55, so I know what that means. That means the winner of this fight’s fighting for the belt.”
Dustin Poirier Says Conor McGregor Wants To Prove “He’s Still The Best”
Since McGregor’s January loss to Poirier, where he was knocked out for the first time in his career, many have questioned whether “The Notorious” still has what it takes to compete at the highest level.
While McGregor is predictably confident heading into the trilogy bout, recently stating his intention to send Poirier to an “early grave,” some believe the Irishman’s comfortable life of luxury may be his downfall.
Poirier, however, believes that for this reason, McGregor will be all the more motivated to prove himself.
“When I think about Conor or think about his approach to this fight or fighting in general, the man doesn’t have to fight,” Dustin Poirier told ESPN. “He’s got money. He doesn’t have to work again a day in his life. So he’s doing this not because he has to. He’s doing this because he wants to.
“And that just shows me that he’s motivated. He’s not going out there to lose or to collect a check. He’s not showing up for work. He’s showing up to try to prove to himself and the world that he’s still the best. And that motivates me to show at my best because that guy doesn’t have to walk in there and fight. He’s doing this because he wants to, so that’s a dangerous man right there.”
Heading into the big event, it seems that while Poirier is favored to win by many of his fellow fighters, McGregor has received the nod from Georges St. Pierre, with the Canadian fancying a second-round KO for “The Notorious.”
What do you think? Will Conor McGregor prove he’s still amongst the best by defeating Dustin Poirier?