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UFC 257 McGregor v Poirier II – A Rematch Odyssey

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Six years ago, two men stepped inside the UFC octagon for the first McGregor v Poirier installment. An uncut Diamond met a green but notorious Irishman. The Irishman claimed first blood, but little did he know that diamonds made from blood (aka blood diamond) are the most dangerous to come across.

At UFC 257, you will see two seasoned but hungry men fight for a chance to reclaim the gold. But for one man, a little more to desire. The self-proclaimed “El Diamante,” Spanish for ‘The Diamond,” looks to even the score and reclaim the pride that was lost that fateful night six years ago. Let’s take a look back at the twisted path this odyssey has taken on in six years ahead of McGregor v Poirier II.

McGregor v Poirier

This graphic created by Betway.

A Notorious Voyage

Ever since he came through on his promise of bouncing Dustin’s head off the canvas, Conor went on a run that was of legendary proportions. Within six years, Conor McGregor transformed himself from rising star to sports icon. Shortly after beating Dustin, McGregor supposedly faced his biggest test in his MMA career, a Team Alpha Male wrestler named Chad Mendes for the Interim Featherweight title. Down went Mendes, giving the Irishman his first taste of gold. Channeling his inner leprechaun, he went after the real gold. Challenging the decade-long undefeated Brazilian King of Rio was no easy feat, in which Mendes failed twice.

Down went the King of Rio, in 13 mere seconds, along with a winning streak that took nearly ten years to build; ended in about a quarter of a minute. After tasting humanity against Nate Diaz and evening the score, he continued his voyage to immortality. He then challenged the Underground King of Violence, Eddie Alvarez. Down went Alvarez, in what was said to be Conor’s best masterful performance to date. He then broke the fourth wall, crossed over to boxing, challenged its greatest and undefeated boxer: Floyd “Money” Mayweather. Just like Icarus, McGregor flew a little too close to the sun. He indeed got burned for it, resulting in a 10th Round TKO against Mayweather. After one of the biggest money fights in combat sports, McGregor decided to bask and invest in his newfound fame, success, and money. Along this detour, Conor McGregor had several falls from grace. A loss to the current champion Khabib back in 2018 highlighted how the toxicity of fame and money had deteriorated the fighter that McGregor was. After announcing his short-lived comeback season in 2020, he debuted the season against an ol’ critic, a blast from the past, Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone. But no longer did you see the Art of Mental Warfare, nor did you see soul-snatching banter. Instead, you saw a calm and pacified Conor. When the time came to fight, Conor silenced all the critics. Down went the infamous Cowboy Cerrone in a matter of 46 seconds. He broke and shattered the face of the always-game Donald Cerrone. COVID-19 threw a giant wrench in Conor’s proposed season. And now, after a lot of silly retirements and fantasy boxing/sparring matches, we come to UFC 257. We watch a rematch that was inevitable as the weight class has some questions that need answers.

A Diamond’s Clear Path

Dustin had questions after being knocked out by the Notorious One. Tasting bitter defeat in an emotionally driven fight caused Dustin to re-evaluate his options and change his career trajectory. Listening to fellow ATT teammate Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal, Dustin looked to start his new lease on life 10 pounds higher in the UFC’s most prestigious lightweight division. And the rest, as they say, it is history. After donning his now-signature hairstyle, he went on an impressive run that highlighted victories over former champions such as Pettis, Gaethje, Alvarez, and Holloway. His last bout against one half of the co-main for UFC 257, Dan “The Hangman” Hooker, was a Fight of the Year contender. His only setback was against one of the greatest to ever step foot inside the octagon, Khabib Nurmagomedov. All that said, this fight brings Dustin to a fork in his career path. The big question: Is Dustin cut out to be the king in the UFC’s lightweight jungle? Or will he always be one inch short? True he tasted gold, but that gold was never pure. For that gold still lays in the clutches of the world’s most dangerous eagle, Khabib Nurmagomedov.

UFC 257 McGregor v Poirier II: Past and Future

Everyone wonders whether we get an instant dose of déjà vu or if the future has indeed shaped these two fighters into two transformed mixed martial artists. Dustin is now a technical boxer rather than a chaotic brawler. Conor McGregor’s cardio and stamina are no longer his most significant concerns. It truly is a different matchup. Also, here is a guarantee: You’ll be on the edge of your seat for the whole fight. Don’t forget to drink in the McGregor v Poirier UFC 257 results, for, in this crazy world, you never know when you’ll see another McGregor fight.

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- Combat Sports Journalist that covers UFC, Bellator, and PFL.