Dustin Poirier’s epic win puts him in the Conor McGregor conversation

Dustin Poirier’s remarkable victory Saturday sees him linked with the Conor McGregor comeback rumors.Poirier defeated Dan Hooker in a must-see UFC lightweight fight at the UFC-owned facility called Apex in Las Vegas, a behind-closed-doors show because of the coronavirus pandemic.McGregor announced a shock retirement earlier this month, moments after the UFC 250 event finished.Few in the industry believed the Irishman’s statement, with the UFC commentator Joe Rogan saying that McGregor just wanted people to talk about him.Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Dustin Poirier’s blood and guts victory Saturday puts him in the Conor McGregor conversation even though the Irishman is “retired,” according to MMA reporters.Poirier prevailed by way of five-round decision, edging lightweight opponent Dan Hooker in a must-see slobberknocker for the ages at a behind-closed-doors event in the UFC-owned facility called Apex in Las Vegas.The fight, between two top-five ranked 155-pounders, pushes Poirier further up the lightweight rankings ladder. However, with Justin Gaethje and the reigning UFC champion Khabib Nurmagomedov likely fighting later this year, it leaves few candidates for Poirier to be matched with ahead of his own title shot should he keep winning.Considering how markedly he has improved since losing a featherweight fight to McGregor in 2014, with 10 wins from 13 fights (one a no contest) since, including wins over Gaethje, Eddie Alvarez, Max Holloway, and now Hooker, a rematch could be an option.

Sean Sheehan, a reporter for the Irish fight site Severe MMA, tweeted enthusiasm for Poirier vs. McGregor 2.—Seán Sheehan (@SeanSheehanBA) June 28, 2020As did the MMA Fighting reporter Damon Martin:—Damon Martin (@DamonMartin) June 28, 2020Even ahead of the Poirier vs. Hooker fight, an ESPN host called Phil Murphy put McGregor’s name in the mix during a broadcast:—Phil Murphy (@Phil_Sports) June 27, 2020McGregor said earlier this month that he is retiredThe Irish striker McGregor, who last fought at UFC 246 when he annihilated Donald Cerrone in 40 seconds, announced a shock retirement on social media just moments after the UFC 250 pay-per-view show on June 6 finished.

McGregor said: “Hey guys, I’ve decided to retire from fighting. Thank you all for the amazing memories! What a ride it’s been!”His statement highlighted a “serious problem” the UFC currently has with “its most profitable stars” as experts say there are now several athletes in “mutiny” — perhaps over fighter pay.McGregor said late, last year that he wanted to fight thrice in 2020 and, with only one win on his record this year, there are not many who believed the fighter is retired for real.McGregor later added that options the UFC presented to him were uninspiring and that he was “bored,” “tired,” and just not excited by the fight game anymore.

The UFC commentator Joe Rogan responded that McGregor is just trying to get people to talk about him, and three UFC fighters have since lined up to fight him, challenging the former two-weight champion to return.There may now be a fourth, as ESPN MMA reporter Ariel Helwani tweeted shortly after Poirier had trumped Hooker, that a match between Poirier and Tony Ferguson, whose 12 fight winning run was abruptly halted by Gaethje last month, should be next.Poirier, though, appears to have other things on his mind — chiefly, rest — before he thinks about whether to campaign for a Ferguson or McGregor fight later this year.—The Diamond (@DustinPoirier) June 28, 2020Read more:

American fighter Dustin Poirier edged Dan Hooker in a bloody, back-and-forth slobberknocker for the ages2 American boxers threw and landed the same power punch at the same time, almost sealing an ultra rare double knockoutA 29-year-old Australian is on the cusp of another world title shot after bludgeoning and bloodying his opponent in a close-range brawlUFC boss Dana White says he hasn’t spoken to Conor McGregor for weeks, suggesting the Irishman’s shock retirement is real

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