Conor McGregor lost to Dustin Poirier last Saturday night. It was his second loss to Poirier in 2021. The first was via knockout in the second round, and this time out it was a TKO due to a doctor's stoppage after McGregor snapped the lower portion of his left leg. Poirier, like it or not, it clearly the superior fighter between the two, but McGregor's struggles are not new. This might come as news to casual fans who buy into his hype, but McGregor isn't as good as you may think he is. At least, not anymore.
McGregor debuted in the UFC on April 6, 2013. He won that fight, going 9-1 between his debut and November 12, 2016 when he became the Champ-Champ by defeating Eddie Alverez at Madison Square Gardens. That's a span of about three and a half years where the only loss McGregor had was to Nate Diaz, a loss which he got back a few months later. You can't argue with how dominant McGregor was. He beat Aldo, Poirier, and Holloway. Aldo is a legend that smoked everyone until McGregor came along, and Holloway and Poirier are still two of the best fighters on the planet.
The problem is, since becoming the Champ-Champ on November 12, 2016, McGregor is 1-3 in the UFC. In fact, Conor has only one win since Barack Obama was the President of the United States, and that came over Donald Cerrone, who is 0-5-0-1 in his last six. Conor is actually 1-4 if you want to toss in his boxing loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. Either way, Conor has won only one fight since he became the Champ-Champ, but you wouldn't know it given his pre-fight demeanor and marketing push.
Smoke and mirrors
Every time McGregor fights he gives off this confidence that he is the greatest fighter on the planet. He sells it well, but so does the UFC and media. Conor is good business for everyone. The UFC gets its biggest PPVs from McGregor, media sites get more traffic, and the list goes on. When Conor fights, people pay attention, but part of the reason they pay attention is because they believe he's capable of one-punch knockouts like the one he delivered to Aldo six years ago. I mean, he could get a knockout like that, but the chances are becoming slimmer by the fight, especially if Conor keeps rolling out against elite competition. The plans are out. People know how to beat Conor now.
On Saturday, McGregor fought Poirier for the second time in 2021. McGregor did okay in the first round of their first meeting, but lost via KO in the second round. In their second fight of 2021, Poirier was smashing McGregor long before Conor's leg snapped. Two judges scored the round as a 10-8 for Poirier, which is an indication of a lopsided beating. Yes, as the UFC loves to say, anything can happen, but there was about a 10 percent chance Conor was going to win that fight before the leg break. Poirier, like it or not, is the superior fighter.
Why is this important to note? Maybe it isn't, but McGregor's behavior before and after the fight was disgusting. Accusing Poirier's wife of being in his DMs, threatening to kill Poirier, doing what he could to undermine Poirier's hot sauce brand, and making gender jokes. It was a new low for Conor and a bad look. A bad look that he could pull off once upon a time when he was good, but Conor has has been mediocre at best for three years now, at least by UFC face-punching standards. It's time the twice-a-year McGregor fans saw him for what he actually is; a bad sport and an okay fighter.