(Abu Dhabi) Irish mixed martial arts (MMA) superstar Conor McGregor has been knocked out. by the American Dustin Poirier in the second resumption of their UFC fight, Sunday in Abu Dhabi.
McGregor was making his return to an octagon, in the lightweight division, a year after his last appearance. Poirier surprised him with a leg kick followed by a flurry of hand blows that knocked him down, before referee Herb Dean put an end to the fight, after 2 minutes 32 seconds in. the second recovery.
“It’s hard to be inactive for that long,” pleaded the 32-year-old Irish fighter, after what was only his third cage fight in over four years.
Brought to the entry floor, a field where he is less comfortable, then destabilized by Poirier’s regular low kicks, “The Notorious” McGregor seemed to find the thread of the fight in the first round before s’ collapse on the chain with the fatal fists of the American in the following recovery.
” His low kick calf was very good, but Dustin is a real fighter, ”admitted McGregor, limping but fair.
“I’m going to dust myself off and come back because that’s what I always do. I will take these blows, ”promised the Irishman.
In front of him, Dustin Poirier, 32, showed a version of him very different from that of 2014 when, outmatched, he was knocked out. by McGregor in 109 seconds.
A mark that the Irishman had boasted of lowering under the minute, all week before the meeting.
“First of all, I want to say that Conor took this result with professionalism. We are at 1-1 and maybe we will have to do it again, ”said Poirier.
Second in the UFC lightweight category, the American is in a strong position to inherit or fight for the belt, held by Russian Khabib Nurmagomed (29-0), but now retired.
“I think it was a title fight. I am the champion now, ”Poirier said after his victory in the“ Fight Island ”bubble set up in Abu Dhabi to avoid the risks associated with the coronavirus.