McGregor vs. Poirier II is finally here:
It may only be the UFC’s third live event in 2021, but already, Saturday night’s UFC 257 pay-per-view (10 p.m. ET, 7 p.m. PT, ESPN+, preorder today on www.espnplus.com/ppv so you don’t miss anything following undercard action at 8 p.m. ET, 5 p.m. PT on ESPN and early undercard action on UFC Fight Pass and ESPN+ at 6:30 p.m. ET, 3:30 p.m. PT) is one of the year’s most-anticipated cards in all of combat sports.
Why, you ask?
Does the name of No. 4 Lightweight contender Conor McGregor (22-4) ring a bell to any of you out there?
That’s right, folks, “The Notorious” is back after a year away from the Octagon and his second brief retirement from the sport of mixed martial arts and will headline the January UFC pay-per-view for the second consecutive year in a nontitle bout.
McGregor’s adversary this time around comes in the form of No. 2 contender Dustin Poirier (26-6, one no-contest.)
As with all UFC main events, this one will be a maximum of five rounds at five minutes per round.
The previous meeting:
McGregor and Poirier fought another once before, on Sept. 27, 2014.
That night, Poirier bested McGregor by first-round knockout during UFC 178’s main card on pay-per-view.
Heading into Saturday night’s main event, both men stand level at 5-foot-9.
How they got here:
Dustin Poirier has posted a 4-1 record in his last five UFC appearances, most recently defeating Dan Hooker via unanimous decision in UFC Vegas 4’s headliner from the UFC Apex on June 27.
In the other corner, Conor McGregor has gone 3-2 in his last five UFC fights, beating Donald Cerrone by first-round knockout during UFC 246’s main event on Jan. 18, 2020.
The Tale of the Tape:
UFC.com shows that McGregor owns a two-inch reach advantage (74 inches to 72 inches), with Poirier owning a half-inch leg reach advantage (40 ½ inches to 40 inches even) heading into this main event on Jan. 23.
Prediction: Conor McGregor by first-round knockout.
Other fights on UFC 257: McGregor vs. Poirier II’s main card include the following:
Co-Main Event: No. 6 contender Dan Hooker (20-9) vs. Michael Chandler (21-5, UFC debut) [Lightweight]
No. 6 contender Jessica Eye (15-8) vs. No. 7 contender Joanne Calderwood (14-4) [Women’s Flyweight]
Andrew Sanchez (12-5) vs. Makhmud Muradov (24-6) [Middleweight]
Matt Frevola (8-1-1) vs. Ottman Azaitar (13-0) [Lightweight]- canceled after Azaitar was cut by the UFC upon Dana White’s security team flagging an unauthorized guest delivering a bag to his hotel room– a violation of the safety protocol.
Frevola has since been rebooked to fight Arman Tsarukyan (15-2) in the featured undercard bout on ESPN.
No. 8 contender Marina Rodriguez (12-1-2) vs. No. 10 contender Amanda Ribas (10-1) [Strawweight]