UFC President Dana White believes former two-division champ Conor McGregor was looking past Dustin Poirier in the pair’s recent fight.
McGregor and Poirier, two top lightweight contenders, met in the main event of UFC 257 in January. The bout was a rematch of a 2014 featherweight fight that McGregor won by knockout.
While McGregor certainly had his moments in the rematch, Poirier was able to chew the Irishman’s leg up with calf kicks, and ultimately stop him with punches in the second round.
In the wake of that fight, much has been made of the errors McGregor made in the cage. According to White, one of those errors may have been looking past Poirier.
"I think Conor was overlooking Dustin, let me just get through this and onto other things."
Dana White believes that Conor McGregor was not focused on @DustinPoirier in January.
— UFC on BT Sport (@btsportufc) March 10, 2021
“I don’t think there has to be trash talk or any of that stuff,” White said (via MMA Mania). “And I don’t know if this is true — only Conor can answer this question — I think Conor was overlooking Dustin, like ‘let me just get through this and onto other things.’”
While White believes McGregor looked past Poirier at UFC 257, McGregor himself has been fairly candid about the fact that he simply didn’t employ the right strategy, and that he wasn’t prepared for his rival’s kicking game.
“My leg is completely dead and even though I felt like I was checking [the calf kicks], it was just sinking into the muscle at the front of the leg and it was very badly compromised,” McGregor said at the UFC 257 post-fight press conference. “It’s like an American football in my suit at the minute.
“It is what it is. Dustin fought a hell of a fight, engaged in the takedown attempt and I thought I did well when I got up and turned him,” McGregor added. “I was thinking in my head in the second round to tie up with him because I was better in the clinch but too little, too late. The leg was compromised and I didn’t adjust. Fair play to Dustin.”
If Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier meet in a trilogy fight this year, who do you think will win?