Former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping has shared his thoughts on why Conor McGregor lost to Dustin Poirier.
McGregor and Poirier met in the main event of UFC 257 this past weekend. The bout was a rematch of a 2014 fight that McGregor won by first-round knockout.
This time around, however, Poirier softened McGregor up with leg kicks and ultimately stopped him with strikes in round two.
Speaking on the UFC 257 post-fight show on ESPN, Bisping offered his take on what went wrong for McGregor at UFC 257. He believes it was, in part, a question of conditioning.
“What I saw here was Conor’s lack of conditioning once again rearing its ugly head,” Bisping said (via MMA Fighting). “I hate to say it. Dustin Poirier had the perfect game plan — go in clinch, try and take him down — and he did that perfectly. At the start of the fight, Conor looked sharp. He looked like the usual Conor. Landing the left hand, looking confident, going forward, but then when you make somebody wrestler that isn’t used to it, that has a history of getting tired, that’s what we saw. We saw the facial expression change. We saw the confidence change and then as the tide started to turn, Dustin Poirier saw the opening, put him to sleep. Just a tremendous night for Dustin Poirier.
“While the stakes were high and Dustin was having success, he was leaving openings that in the past I feel McGregor would have taken advantage of there. But as I said, he was starting to get a little tired and we saw what happened.”
After losing to Poirier, McGregor was quick to blame his performance on his inactivity, as he’s competed in just three mixed martial arts contests since 2014.
Bisping, however, believes that so-called “ring rust” is purely a mental hurdle.
“Georges St-Pierre came off the couch after three and a half years and choked me out unconscious,” Bisping said. “A lot of people say that ring rust is a mental thing and it is. It’s a mental thing.
“If Conor was staying in the gym and doing everything he said, it wouldn’t be a factor,” Bisping added. “The reality is tonight he went out there and he got beat by Dustin Poirier. There’s no shame in that.
“At the end of the day you get ready, two people enter the cage, Dustin was the better man tonight,” Bisping concluded. “You can look for excuses. You can try and dissect it. The ultimate answer tonight the better man won the fight.”
What do you think of this analysis from Michael Bisping? Do you think Conor McGregor was foiled by a deficit in the conditioning department?This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM