It was far from a surprise to see Conor McGregor react to Dustin Poirier’s unreal win over Max Holloway (watch the highlights) in the main event of last night’s (Sat., April 13, 2019) UFC 236 from Las Vegas.
After all, ‘The Notorious’ has made it a post-fight custom to either congratulate or call out the weekend’s UFC main event winner (or both). However, this time around he had a personal investment. It was at least possible for the winner of the interim lightweight main event to get a shot at undisputed champ Khabib.
McGregor is still angling for that rematch after losing a one-sided contest to Khabib at last October’s UFC 229. That became apparent in recent weeks. The Irishman rekindled his highly personal online battle with ‘The Eagle.’
But Khabib thinks McGregor needs to pick up a win before he fights for the belt once again.
McGregor suggested that Poirier fight Nate Diaz next despite “The Diamond” holding the interim gold. However, UFC President Dana White confirmed Poirier would get the next shot at Khabib at the UFC 236 post-fight presser. It’s the right match to make in terms of rankings legitimacy, yet that has hardly been the gold standard for UFC fight booking in the ‘McGregor Era’ (if ever). As it sits, McGregor is dealing with a whole host of outside-the-cage issues he doesn’t really seem to be worried about.
He and White are supposedly meeting in the immediate future to discuss his next move. His longtime coach John Kavanagh is looking to see some positive fight-related things.
So he promised just that on social media this afternoon in a roundabout way, claiming his fans wouldn’t believe him if he revealed how confident he is for the future. That belief wasn’t needed anyhow, he boasted:
‘If I told you how confident I was for the future, you wouldn’t believe me. But your belief is not needed.’
All Style & No Substance
Another solid, drawing lead-in from McGregor on social media. Problem is, that’s becoming the whole scope of his appearances in the fight game as of late. It does get big attention from mainstream fans, and in truth, those are the fans he continues to thrive on. Hardcore MMA types will always follow the biggest news in the sport of mixed martial arts whether they like him or not.
But as Khabib so succinctly said this week, he hasn’t won a fight since 2016. That type of track record would sink many a lesser pro fighter. The UFC’s first double champ has kept his rep afloat with varied outside-the-cage ventures that turned to success. You only need look at his booming Proper Twelve Irish Whiskey sales to decipher that.
Still, he’s eventually going to have a win a fight to stay relevant in the rarified air he claims to occupy. It appears his boss Dana White is longing for his much more active early-career days as well, as he said new interim middleweight champ Israel Adesanya is like a young McGregor.
In truth, ‘The Notorious’ is only a year older than the 29-year-old Adesanya. There’s time for him to turn his somewhat floundering fighting career where he’s lost three of his last five contests back around. McGregor is confident he’ll do so.
Are you? According to him, that particular belief isn’t needed.