“He’s going out on a stretcher in this fight,” Conor McGregor told Dustin Poirier as the superstar stepped up the trash can and vitriol up to UFC 264.
In a Fate Fatal Failure, it was McGregor who left the cage on a stretcher after sustaining a gruesome leg injury and lost at the doctor’s stop in a brief but exciting main event.
McGregor came out with a kick-heavy attack and lashed Poirier with his patented left hand before Poirier managed to land a pair of solid left by himself, and McGregor initiated a clinch.
Poirier pushed McGregor to the fence, where the former two-weight champion surprisingly jumped on a guillotine choke. For several tense seconds, it looked like McGregor had a tight pressure on Poirier’s neck, but all that ultimately ended up happening was McGregor, who allowed Poirier to gain a dominant position.
McGregor tried to inflict elbows and kicks from his back, but he was beaten worse than at any point in his 2018 loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov in their infamous UFC 229 fight.
– UFC (@ufc) July 11, 2021
After Poirier’s vicious attack on the ground and the pound, the two got back on their feet late in the round. As the two men then exchanged blows in the waning seconds, McGregor’s left leg bent under him, rendering him unable to continue.
It was a wild five minutes with the conclusion, somewhat reminiscent of Anderson Silva’s and Chris Weidman’s memorable leg injuries in the cage, even though McGregors was not quite as graphic.
UFC President Dana White told reporters McGregor maintained a broken lower tibia and will be operated on Sunday.
Poirier theorized McGregor initially injured the leg on a kick he threw about 20 seconds into the fight.
We’ve seen McGregor deal with class losses earlier against Nate Diaz in 2016 and even against Poirier earlier this year, but that’s not the path he took at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
A sewing McGregor became personal and made negative comments about Poirier’s wife, as he did before the match.
“Karma is not a bitch, she’s a mirror, and this guy said the wrong thing [expletive], ”Poirier said in his post-match interview.
Added White: “I do not like that. It is not good. Let people’s wives and family and those things out of it. ”
Poirier takes the highway
The last time McGregor was defeated after an intense build-up before the match, with insults crossing the line, Nurmagomedov jumped the fence and chaos ensued.
Poirier remained flat and did not kick McGregor when he was down, literally or figuratively, when Saturday’s trilogy match was over.
In addition to comments regarding Poirier’s wife, McGregor said he wanted to inflict deadly damage on Poirier in the cage.
“There are no restrictions on the trash, but murder is something you do not clown with,” Poirier said. “No one is coming back from it and this guy said he would kill me and all sorts of things. He told me he was going to kill me and tell me I’m going to leave here in a coffin and you do not talk to people like that, man.
“I hope this guy gets home safely to his beautiful family, you know?”
Poirier also talked about his charity, The Good Fight Foundationand thanked a young man in the audience who is fighting cancer to be an inspiration.
Poirier, who now holds the record for most KO / TKO wins in UFC lightweight history, should face current lightweight titleholder Charles Oliveira later this year to determine the top active 155-pound in the sport.
Tuivasa loves bangers and shoes
Australian knockout artist Tai Tuivasa entered the Octagon with the Spice Girls’ big pop banger, Wannabe, jumping through the entire arena (just days after the song celebrated its 25th anniversary no less. Shout-out to Sporty, Baby, Scary , Ginger and Posh). Tuivasa was loose and dancing as he entered the cage, and that put him in the right mindset for his clash with former NFL star Greg Hardy.
Tuivasa saw sharp throws kick early on, and after being briefly angled by a Hardy right hand, he connected on a blistering counter-combination as his overzealous opponent rushed in.
He celebrated the biggest victory of his career in the only way he knows how: by drinking beer out of foreign shoes.
– ESPN MMA (@espnmma) July 11, 2021
Bruv, Tai Tuivasa made a shoe with Dustin Poirier’s hot sauce in the mix! pic.twitter.com/xAwaHzbcmY
– Chamatkar Sandhu (@SandhuMMA) July 11, 2021
Tuivasa was not ranked by heavyweight on its way into the event and is now on a three-match first-round knockout streak. Get that man to a top-15 opponent next plus a tetanus shot or a multivitamin or something after consuming god knows what from all these random shoes.
‘Sugar’ Sean wins, but it leaves sour taste in Moutinho’s mouth
Sean O’Malley was the biggest betting favorite on the map, and the popular bantamweight put on a striking clinic against short-lived UFC debutant Kris Moutinho, whose fans undoubtedly grew tremendously after showing off his color. O’Malley landed 230 out of 318 significant strikes, good for an astonishing connection rate of 72 percent.
Almost as impressive as O’Malley’s output and accuracy were Moutinho’s heart and durability. He was dropped late in the first round, but mostly managed to go through O’Malley’s best strikes. Therefore, it was somewhat surprising that referee Herb Dean stopped the match with less than 30 seconds left in the final round despite Moutinho not hitting the canvas once more and wanting to continue. It’s hard to blame the referee for the stop given that Moutinho ate unanswered power shots while only getting a small insult. Moutinho protested, but he was saved from further unnecessary head trauma.
The pair walked away with Fight of the Night bonuses despite the one-sided nature of the scrap.
– UFC (@ufc) July 11, 2021
Du Plessis makes another statement
Dricus du Plessis improved to 2-0 in the UFC with another impressive knockout victory. The South African used his left hand for KO Markus Perez in his UFC debut nine months ago. This time he landed a clean through right hand that sent Trevin Giles on the canvas and several follow-up shots later the match was called.
– UFC Canada (@UFC_CA) July 11, 2021
The 27-year-old is 16-2 in MMA with 16 finishes and definitely someone to keep an eye on in middleweight.
“Dricus du Plessis. Remember the name, ”you said Plessis. “It will be a household name in the top 10 very, very soon.”
Topuria solves unique Hall puzzles
Ryan Hall has perhaps the most distinct and unconventional style of any fighter on the UFC list. He rolls for leg locks more often than he shoots for conventional takedowns and seems more likely to land a rotating wheel kick than he is a jab. Undefeated as a pro since his MMA debut in 2006, Hall met his fight in rising featherweight talent Ilia Topuria at the opening.
Topuria became the first fighter to finish Hall and did so when Hall left his head exposed after a failed rotary kick attack.
– UFC Canada (@UFC_CA) July 11, 2021
The 24-year-old Georgian, who is fighting out of Spain, is now 11-0 in MMA with a well-rounded skill set. He has knocked out three of his last four opponents after the Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt began his career with seven consecutive submission wins.
Do not be shocked if he gets a top-15 fighter of 145 pounds in the not too distant near future.
Tavares binds Silva on the list of middleweight victories
Brad Tavares has been a steady presence in the UFC’s 185-pound division since 2010, and now he’s in some elite company thanks to a unanimous decision victory over Omari Akhmedov. Tavares improved to 14-6 under the UFC banner by tying Anderson Silva in all-time middleweight victories with only Michael Bisping ahead of him on the list.