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Why McGregor Beats Poirier – More Than Power Could Affect the UFC 257 Fight

| January 15, 2021 11:39 am PDT
Why McGregor Beats Poirier at UFC 257

Anyone looking to make money betting on McGregor to beat Poirier at UFC 257 should be able to tell you why they are backing the former “Champ-Champ.”

So, for all you bettors looking to cash in on UFC superstar on January 23, why does McGregor win against Poirier? If you’re looking bewildered at the screen right now, wondering if I can hear you, rest assured that I can’t. I just want you to ask yourself why it is you are betting on McGregor.

Now, you can probably reel off several convincing factors that go towards favoring a win for “The Notorious.” Conversely, you might just be following the advice of friends or have been seduced by the inescapable buzz surrounding the 32-year-old.

Regardless of what description fits best, I have put together these five reasons why McGregor beats Poirier to help you better understand his chances in the fight. Enjoy!

He’s Done It Before

UFC 174. September 27, 2014. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Fresh off his legendary night in Dublin, where he knocked out Brazil’s Diego Brandao in front of his home fans, McGregor took to the cage against featherweight prospect Dustin Poirier.

This was viewed as the toughest test of McGregor’s career to date. Poirier had some very good wins under his belt, including a first-round submission of Max Holloway and his own first-round KO of Brandao.

But McGregor’s legion of admirers was delighted when “The Notorious” knocked Poirier out after just 1:46 of the first round. It was a stunning performance that played a major part in setting the Irishman up with a shot at the featherweight title.

If you’re looking for reasons why McGregor beats Poirier, you won’t find much better than this one. Not only did he beat “The Diamond,” but he starched him in under two minutes.

McGregor Has the Psychological Edge

When this braggadocious, uber-witty trash talker arrived in the UFC, he caught many of his peers by surprise.

McGregor showed no respect for the status quo at 145-pounds. Even Jose Aldo, the legendary champion of the division, did not escape his wrath. So what chance did Dustin Poirier have?

In a presser held before the fight in 2014, McGregor took aim at Poirier.

“September 27, I am going to rip Dustin’s head clean off. It makes no difference. Dustin, “Pea Head,” thinks it’s all talk, but when he wakes up with his nose plastered on the other side of his face, he’s going to know it’s not all talk.”

Poirier might have escaped with his nose intact, but that stoppage will not have been forgotten.

The psychological aspect of combat sports is often its most underrated. It’s very difficult to get over losing to anyone by knockout. Not only do you not want to go back to that place, but you become hyper-aware of the power of your opponent, especially if the knockout was a fast and clean one.

Will this lead to Poirier giving up certain advantages when it comes to fight night? It could. After all, he knows better than most just how hard McGregor hits.

He Has Serious Knockout Power

McGregor’s legendary “Celtic Cross” is responsible for the vast majority of his wins inside the cage.

As it stands, McGregor has 22 wins from 26 fights, with an incredible 19 of those wins coming by way of KO/TKO.

Opponent Result Date and Event
Donald Cerrone Win by TKO UFC 246 – Jan 18, 2020
Eddie Alvarez Win by TKO UFC 205 – Nov 12, 2016
José Aldo Win by KO UFC 194 – Dec 12, 2015
Chad Mendes Win by TKO UFC 189 – Jul 11, 2015
Dennis Siver Win by TKO UFC FN – Jan 18, 2015
Dustin Poirier Win by TKO UFC 178 – Sep 27, 2014
Diego Brandão Win by TKO UFC FN – Jul 19, 2014
Marcus Brimage Win by TKO UFC on Fuel – Apr 6, 2013
Ivan Buchinger Win by KO CW 51 – Dec 31, 2012
Steve O’Keefe Win by KO CW 45 – Feb 18, 2012
Aaron Jahnsen Win by TKO CWFN 2 – Sep 8, 2011
Artur Sowinski Win by TKO CG 2 – Jun 11, 2011
Paddy Doherty Win by KO IFC 4 – Apr 16, 2011
Mike Wood Win by KO CC8 – Mar 12, 2011
Hugh Brady Win by TKO Chaos FC 8 – Feb 12, 2011
Connor Dillon Win by TKO Chaos FC 7 – Oct 9, 2010
Stephen Bailey Win by TKO K.O. – Dec 12, 2008
Mo Taylor Win by TKO CRC – May 3, 2008
Gary Morris Win BY TKO COT 2 – Mar 8, 2008


There is an art to knocking fighters out. Hence the term “knockout artist.” McGregor was certainly branded as such in the earlier stages of his career. As you can see from the data above, he has put some of the best fighters on the planet away well inside the distance.

McGregor went some way to restoring his reputation for being a showstopper against Donald Cerrone in January 2020. Unlike some of his other big wins — where he used that excellent straight left to down his opponents — the Dubliner showed off a more cultured array of strikes that included shots from the knees and shoulders.

Although Poirier is an excellent striker in his own right, one of the main reasons McGregor beats Poirier at UFC 257, or in any hypothetical fight scenario, would be down to his power.

Wouldn’t you agree?

McGregor Is Faster Than Poirier

At featherweight, McGregor was a very nimble and athletic fighter.

But over the years, his style has changed somewhat. Rather than bouncing in and out of range, he tends to stalk, pressure, and plod towards his opponents, looking to plant his front foot down and headhunt where possible.

This was evident in both of his fights with Nate Diaz at welterweight, his win over Eddie Alvarez and loss to Khabib at lightweight, as well as in his most recent win over Donald Cerrone at 170.

But. When it comes to hand speed, he certainly has the advantage over Poirier. His fast-twitch, super-accurate striking makes him a man you just do not want to stand and trade with. He has good head movement, a great understanding of range, and, of course, a very long reach for a man of his stature.

Another underestimated factor of McGregor’s success is his fight IQ. His reads and setups are excellent, and he can almost see things happening that split second before his opponent knows what they are doing.

The speed advantage is almost definitely with McGregor. Just ask Eddie Alvarez, who explained his thoughts after being stopped by the Irishman.

“It was more his speed (that I was surprised by).”

“I got dropped a couple of times, the first time I got dropped I remember being on my butt and thinking, ‘Wow, that was quick. Whatever that was it was fast.”

“I’ve been there plenty of times in my career where I get dropped. I don’t panic; I keep my composure and get back up.”

“His speed and timing were very good; you could tell he’s got years of boxing behind him.”

McGregor Knows Poirier Inside Out

Has Dustin Poirier improved since losing to McGregor the first time?

Um, yeah. He has. A lot.

Poirier’s Record Since Losing to McGregor
  • Poirier has won 10 from 13 fights since losing to Conor McGregor in 2014.
  • He has lost two, with the other fight ending as a No Contest against Eddie Alvarez in 2018.

Poirier has been in solid form since that loss to McGregor.

Having made a choice to get the hell out of dodge immediately after being knocked out by the trash-talking Dubliner, he won 10 from 13 straight fights at lightweight. The only men to beat him at 155 were Michael Johnson (by KO) and Khabib Nurmagomedov (by submission).

Poirier is a natural lightweight and one of the best 155-pounders in the history of the UFC lightweight division. He is a former interim champion and just so strong in every department.

If a buddy was to say, “Hey, I’m betting on Poirier to beat McGregor,” I wouldn’t laugh. I don’t think anyone would. I wouldn’t laugh at anyone betting on Poirier to win the UFC lightweight title, either. He’s that good.

The Louisiana native’s improvements are there for all to see. But that includes McGregor, of course.

A judicious planner, The Notorious will have spent a large portion of his time looking over tape after tape of Poirier’s fight footage. He will be confident that there is something to exploit in the American’s game and will be prepared to let his nukes loose on the night.

If you and I can write about the many improvements Poirier has made in MMA, you can bet your last cent that McGregor knows him inside out. Sure, McGregor’s strengths and weaknesses are just as clear to Poirier, but who can take advantage of their knowledge?

Maybe the best reason for why McGregor beats Poirier at UFC 257 is, well, that he understands everything about the man that will be standing in front of him on January 23.

Does McGregor Beat Poirier at UFC 257

Well, what do you think?

Does McGregor win this fight? Or will Poirier’s odds to beat McGregor on these real money UFC betting apps be enough to ignore all of the above and get behind The Diamond on January 23?

That, my friend, is your call. But I would definitely read the following content before you get your money down. It’ll help you understand everything that is at stake in the fight. But more than this, it will allow you to target the best McGregor odds and bets, the leading sites, and a little bit extra to put you firmly in the driver’s seat.

Adam Haynes
Adam Haynes

Adam is a sports writer and tipster with a strong background in MMA, boxing, and combat sports.

When Adam isn't writing about those, as well as politics, rugby, and Gaelic Games, he can be found working on methods and strategies to beat the bookies.

For his troubles, Adam is a fan of Leinster Rugby, Glasgow Celtic, and trusting the process.

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