Sitting at 1-1 from their two Octagon outings against each other, former two-weight world champion, ‘The Notorious’ Conor McGregor and Dustin ‘The Diamond’ Poirier have both voiced their interest in a potential rubber-match in the future, however, the former hopes to secure the trilogy immediately — with a yet to be vacated lightweight title up for grabs.
Avenging a September 2014 knockout loss to McGregor at Saturday’s UFC 257 event, former interim 155-pound titleholder, Poirier put himself in prime contention for a title shot in his next Octagon outing, becoming the first competitor in professional mixed martial arts to stop McGregor with strikes.
Implementing a brutal, stiff calf kick approach, Poirier landed upwards of eleven gruelling shots to McGregor’s southpaw lead, rendering it almost useless before the midway point of the second frame. Backing the Dubliner up to the fence via a combination, Poirier stunned the former featherweight and lightweight champion, before scoring a massive right-hook knockdown — finishing with a subsequent right hand which knocked McGregor out.
Whilst UFC president, Dana White floated the possibility of a vacant title matchup between Poirier and co-headlining winner, ‘Iron’ Michael Chandler, the former distanced himself from a pairing with the new arrival, claiming Chandler needs to lay out a body of work under his new banner before fighting for a title.
A couple of names dropped by Poirier was, of course, McGregor, and once scheduled UFC 230 foe, Nate Diaz. Both Poirier and Diaz have shared the Octagon twice with McGregor, and the two, respectively hold 1-1 records against the Crumlin native.
Hoping to get back that defeat to Poirier, Straight Blast Gym head coach, John Kavanagh spoke with ESPN MMA reporter, Ariel Helwani on Monday afternoon, noting Team McGregor’s plans to secure a rubber-match with Poirier before the summer.
“He’s (Conor McGregor’s) already harassing everybody to get the rematch [with Dustin Poirier],” Kavanagh said. “So we would love the rematch. I don’t think Dustin is against that [a third fight]. Yeah, if we could get the rematch before the summer that’d be amazing. If it’s not to be, well then — I guess I don’t really know. Maybe he drifts off into the boxing side so, if the MMA community could help me here and get behind me and pester the UFC to give him another fight sooner rather than later, so I don’t lose him for six months to boxing, I’d appreciate that.“
Kavanagh detailed how because the fact Poirier vs. McGregor II didn’t feature any title up for grabs, and with the score sitting level at one-a-piece, it makes sense to round out a trilogy with championship spoils on the line next.
“That’s the big drive — that’s the story [a third fight for a title],” Kavanagh said. “It’s 1-1, one-a-piece, they’re right up there in the rankings, they’re very popular fighters the two of them. I think they’ve a beautiful matchup, I think — stylistically, it’s beautiful to watch I’d love to see lots and lots of rounds of the two of them.“
“Dustin’s obviously riding high with confidence now. And with the more experience and the more weight, he took some of those shots and I’m sure he feels — I’m sure his confidence is super high at the moment. We have to fix that technique with the leg and watch out for a couple of other things as well. But, Dustin vs. Conor III for the belt, in I don’t know — May or something like that, wouldn’t that be amazing?“