Dan Hardy predicted Dustin Poirier could beat Conor McGregor with calf kicks

Dan Hardy, Dustin Poirier
Image via @danhardymma on Instagram

MMA analyst Dan Hardy predicted that Dustin Poirier could defeat Conor McGregor by launching an attack on the Irishman’s lead leg.

Poirier and McGregor, two of the UFC’s best lightweights, collided in the main event of UFC 257 last Saturday in Abu Dhabi. The pair had met once before, with McGregor knocking Poirier out in a featherweight fight in 2014.

This time around, Poirier found a way to win, ruining McGregor’s lead leg with kicks and knocking him out with punches in round two—just as Hardy predicted he could do ahead of the fight.

See how Hardy predicted this path to victory for Poirier below.

“[McGregor is] fighting another southpaw here and what we know about McGregor is, because he lifts all of his weight off his rear leg when he’s fighting, he puts all of his weight on his lead leg,” Hardy said in a breakdown on his YouTube channel (via The Body Lock). “So if Poirier can start chopping away at that lead leg, it nullifies big chunks of McGregor’s game. It effectively breaks the handle of the spear because McGregor now can’t plant all of his weight onto that lead leg to throw that left hand over the top with all his power. Because that leg is going to be dead and to put weight on it is going to be painful.

“We know how effective a calf kick can be,” Hardy continued. “A calf kick being singular. You only need to land one in the right shot and that can effectively be a round or two where that is a nullified limb. If Poirier is able to land that early, the threat of the left hand is significantly diminished as well as the kicking game. Because the majority of it is left leg so he needs to plant all of his weight on his right leg to throw all of those kicks.

“So if you dismantle that leg in the early rounds, that puts Poirier in a position where he can force McGregor into a position where he may have to work, clinch or wrestle. And that forces him to work which — long-term game plan — would be valuable.”

What do you think of this extremely accurate breakdown from Dan Hardy?

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