Former interim UFC lightweight champion Dustin Poirier asserted that McGregor, at this stage of his career, isn’t fighting for money but rather to prove something to himself. ‘The Diamond’ believes that McGregor fighting to prove to himself that he’s still one of the best in the world is what’ll make him a dangerous man at UFC 264.
Dustin Poirier spoke to ESPN MMA regarding multiple topics. Among these topics was Poirier’s opinion on his UFC 264 opponent, Conor McGregor. Upon being asked what he’s anticipating from McGregor as a competitor in their upcoming trilogy fight, Poirier stated –
“The best. The most focused he’s been. It’s all on the line. It’s really on the line for him. Like I said, he’s not doing this for money. He’s doing this for pride, for respect; to prove that he’s still an important piece of this 155-pound division. And that’s, you know, that’s a dangerous man, like I said – Somebody who’s doing it for themselves and doing it to prove something."
"He’s not doing it for anything else but that. He doesn’t need to. So, I know he’s motivated. He’s not coming out here to damper his name anymore, to get knocked out again, to get submitted again. He’s coming to try to build McGregor enterprises back to, you know, where it was.” (*Video courtesy: ESPN MMA; H/T Sportskeeda for the transcription)
The winner of the Dustin Poirier vs Conor McGregor UFC 264 matchup could earn a shot at UFC lightweight gold
The first fight between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor witnessed McGregor defeat Poirier via first-round TKO. This fight was contested at featherweight and took place at UFC 178 (September 2014).
In the ensuing years, Dustin Poirier won the interim UFC lightweight title, whereas Conor McGregor won the UFC featherweight and lightweight titles. The two longtime rivals eventually met in a rematch which saw Poirier beat McGregor via second-round TKO. This rematch was contested at lightweight and took place at UFC 257 (January 2021).
Presently, the trilogy fight between Poirier and McGregor is scheduled to be contested at lightweight and will headline the UFC 264 fight card on July 10th, 2021. The winner of the fight is likely to receive the next shot at the UFC lightweight title that’s currently held by Charles Oliveira.