Check out the LowKickMMA staff picks ahead of the UFC 257 main event between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor.

Jordan Ellis: Six years on from UFC 178 a lot has changed for Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor, however the fundamentals of this fight have not changed at all. McGregor remains the big, accurate puncher he has always been. Poirier remains a very hittable fighter. Will he be able to survive the early onslaught? I don’t think so. For that reason, I am picking McGregor to get this done inside two rounds.

Prediction: Conor McGregor

Abhinav Kini: Dustin Poirier has undoubtedly improved significantly since the first fight and at 155, has proven to be very durable. However, damage accumulates, especially given the wars he’s been in with Justin Gaethje, Max Holloway and Dan Hooker. Adding to that, Conor McGregor is still the best striker in the division and has already knocked him out which will play some psychological role one would imagine. I see the same result happening and in the first round as well.

Prediction: Conor McGregor

Alex Lough: It seems the narrative going into this fight is how much both fighters have grown since their first fight. However, I think the same general thought process from that fight still applies. Dustin has become a fan favorite from the absolute wars he’s been in. Those same wars also showed us that Poirier gets hit alot, and although he’s gone up against some of the best in the division, there’s no one quite like McGregor. He hits harder than the furnace scene in Toy Story 3, and as we’ve seen before, one mistake is all it takes for him to end your night. Much like the first fight, the question will be if Dustin is able to get the fight to the ground, where we’ve seen holes in Conor’s game. As much as I like Dustin and want him to win, I think the we saw the answer in their first meeting. Conor by KO.

Prediction: Conor McGregor

Chris De Santiago: I’ve been looking forward to this rematch for many years and it’s finally here. McGregor and Poirier are two of my favorite fighters, so it is hard to pick against each other. The narrative in this one is that Poirier is a totally different fighter than the first time they fought but so is McGregor. He earned dual belts since then and has truly honed his craft as a martial artist, especially now, supposedly hungrier than ever. The longer this fight goes favors Poirier in the later rounds, however McGregor will likely take him out in the early rounds. While Poirier’s chin is a lot better than it what at 145, it is questionable now after all of the wars he has endured in his last few fights. I believe those wars will have taken a toll on how much damage Poirier can take in this fight, so I side with McGregor with mere precision and power.

Prediction: Conor McGregor

Karim Nathan: I always look forward to a Conor McGregor fight, I feel like he is fighting a different Poirier to their first fight and this is obvious in the build-up. I believe that Conor will go out and start fast trying to finish the night early and what is obvious from Dustin’s fights is that he is hittable even though his last couple of wins have come via decision, which shows he can take a punch much better now, it still won’t be enough as Conor’s power is just something else. Conor via second round KO

Prediction: Conor McGregor

Harry O’Connor: There’s nothing quite like a McGregor fight week, and this week has been no different. I prefer this McGregor to the notable trash talking McGregor, he really looks like he’s got his head screwed on and if the way he’s talking is anything to go by, we’re in for a spectacle come Saturday night. I think when Conor said Poirier is great but he isn’t on his level, is a fair representation of how this fight will go. When I look back to the Poirier-Hooker fight, I see a brawler in Poirier who whilst giving out a lot of strikes, also took plenty and he’s not going to be able to take shots against McGregor for long. I predict a McGregor KO at the end of the first round.

Prediction: Conor McGregor

Ty Rosson: Rematches are always difficult to predict. Especially when they are at a different weight class than the first bout. Both fighters are very different people now than they were the first go around. The mental warfare that Conor played on Dustin will be written about in sports psychology books for years. This time it is a much different story, both look to be in phenomenal shape mentally and physically. I predict an all-time classic. A back-and-forth fight for 25 minutes and one that we will remember fondly for years to come. Dustin’s grappling will be the slight edge that he needs to get the split decision win in the main event of UFC 257.

Prediction: Dustin Poirier

Declan Flahive: All indications point towards Conor McGregor putting on a masterpiece against Dustin Poirier this weekend. Poirier’s game plan will probably be to try and put the pressure on McGregor and drag him into a bloodbath, but I think McGregor’s octagon control and evasiveness will be too much for the Louisianan to handle. As the left-hand shots and flashy kicks start to find their home on Poirier, it is only a matter of time before “The Diamond” falls. Whilst Poirier has improved since the first bout, he has also been in quite a few wars. This tendency to get hit and Poirier’s desire to stay on the feet will be fatal against a sharp-shooting McGregor who looks to be in the shape of his life, both physically and mentally. Whilst both fighters have improved since 2014, McGregor has gone through his bouts relatively unscathed. Throw in the fact that McGregor has been spending LeBron-level money on his health year-round, and it all starts to look bleak for Poirier. That being said, if Poirier can weather the storm or catch him in a submission, he could pull off the ultimate upset and move towards a shot at gold. There aren’t many people in the UFC more likeable than Dustin Poirier, but I see Conor McGregor finishing him with a second-round TKO.

Prediction: Conor McGregor

Ryan MacCarthy: If you look at the last time they fought, Conor has improved. Dustin has improved, too. But where Dustin, in my opinion, has not improved is his defense. He still gets hit a lot. And that’s why everybody loves Dustin because he gets in awesome fights. I’m a huge fan of Dustin; I love watching him. But he gets hit and you can’t get hit by Conor McGregor, ya just can’t.  I don’t think it’ll be exactly like last time. I think this gets past the 1st round. I don’t think Conor will just come out and finish him. Poiriers head coach Mike Brown and his team will have a plan ready to go, but I think Dustin is going to do Dustin things and he’s going to get caught in an exchange and then he’ll get finished. I see Dustin landing some shots on Conor, and vice versa in the 1st round. But man oh man, I can really see Conor McGregor finishing this one in the 2nd round by TKO.

Prediction: Conor McGregor

A lifelong fight fan from Liverpool, England who has been covering mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing for several years. Follow @JordanEllisUK on Twitter for all the latest fight news, views, interviews and live event coverage.