Michael Bisping believes former UFC lightweight and featherweight champion Conor McGregor is probably ‘hoping and praying’ that Dustin Poirier dethrones UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 242 this September.
McGregor and Nurmagomedov fought in October of 2018. Nurmagomedov won the fight via fourth-round submission, and McGregor has been campaigning for a do-over ever since. Yet Bisping believes McGregor would probably prefer to see Poirier win, as the Irishman holds a victory over “The Diamond” and could conceivably earn a title fight with him based on that.
“He’s probably hoping and praying that Poirier beats Khabib in Abu Dhabi,” Bisping said on his Believe You Me podcast. “If Poirier beats Khabib, obviously we all know Conor has that massive win over Poirier. He did it very, very easily. He made short work of Poirier back in the day. Alright, it was back in the day, it was at [145 pounds], but even still, if Poirier wins, there’s a possibility of setting up that rematch. That’s his shot — and easier shot at the title.”
Bisping’s co-host Luis J Gomez then countered, positing that Conor McGregor is determined to avenge his loss to Nurmagomedov as a matter of pride.
Bisping, however, thinks McGregor has some work to do before a prospective rematch with the undefeated Russian.
“I don’t think he gets that fight [after UFC 242],” Bisping said. “The Poirier fight, definitely, I can see them doing that.
“From the UFC’s perspective, they’re going to do it [the rematch with Nurmagomedov]. [The first fight] was the biggest pay-per-view ever, the rematch is going to be even bigger. Rematches sell, especially with the amount of bad blood, especially with what happened after the fight outside the Octagon. The rematch is going to be huge. I just think Conor has to win another fight first.”
What do you think of Michael Bisping’s take on the situation? Is Conor McGregor hoping for a Dustin Poirier win at UFC 242?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 8/1/2019.