Conor McGregor has claimed he already had "multiple stress fractures" to his shinbone before stepping into the octagon to fight Dustin Poirier on Saturday.

The 33-year-old broke his leg in the first round of the UFC 264 event in Las Vegas after stumbling backwards and trapping his foot beneath himself.

The fight was subsequently stopped by medics and Poirier claimed the victory by TKO – his second win against McGregor in their trilogy of fights.

McGregor has since undergone surgery to repair a break to the lower tibia in his left shin, which could potentially keep the Irishman out of action for the next year.

But in a six-minute video posted on Instagram on Thursday in which he rides around on a motorised scooter, McGregor insisted he had informed UFC chiefs of his injury problems prior to the bout.

"I was injured going into the fight," he said. "People were asking me when was the leg break – at what point did the leg break? Ask Dana White. Ask the UFC. Ask Dr Davidson, the head doctor of the UFC. They knew.

"My leg – I had stress fractures in my leg going into that cage. There was debate about pulling the thing out because I was sparring without shin pads, and I was kicking.

"I kicked the knee a few times, so I had multiple stress fractures in the shin bone above the ankle, and then I had trouble with the ankle anyway throughout the years of fighting all the time."

Former two-weight world champion McGregor also revealed how he now has a titanium rod inserted in his "unbreakable" leg, which he joked makes him feel like fictional cyborg The Terminator.

"I used to just train on my back, and that's how I developed those ground-and-pound shots from the back. That's why Dustin backed away when he was on top of me and I was landing the upkicks and the elbows," he said.

"It's a horrible place to be in when you're against someone like me. You can't land.

"You take so much effort to try and land shots from your top position, and while you're trying to do that and losing your energy, you're getting lumped out by downward elbows and vicious upkicks. 

"It was a skill I developed because I had the damaged leg, and I had to adjust my training.

"What I needed was a titanium shinbone and now I've got a titanium rod from the knee to the ankle. The doctor says it's unbreakable. Once I keep building back, playing with the balance, then build the strength, I have an unbreakable titanium leg. 

"I'm like Arnie [Arnold Schwarzenegger] in Terminator 2! I've got all the tools to do this and I'm going to do it – what a story it's going to be."

Conor McGregor says he is "feeling tremendous" after undergoing successful surgery on the broken leg sustained in his defeat to Dustin Poirier.

The 32-year-old left the octagon on a stretcher at the UFC 264 event after stumbling backwards and trapping his foot underneath himself towards the end of the first round.

McGregor's defeat and potential long-term injury lay-off raised further questions over his future in UFC, but the Irishman has vowed to come back even stronger.

"Just out of the surgery room, everything went to plan, everything went perfect and I'm feeling tremendous," he said in a video update posted on social media. 

"We've got six weeks on a crutch now and then we begin to build back.

"A clean break of the tibia and it was not to be. Dustin, you can celebrate that illegitimate win all you want but you've done nothing in there. 

"That second round would have shown all. Onwards and upwards we go. We dust ourselves off, we build ourselves back, and we come back better than ever."

McGregor beat Poirier – the eighth fighter in UFC history to earn 20 wins – with a first-round TKO in 2014, but the American responded with a second-round TKO in January.

Speaking after Saturday's trilogy fight in Las Vegas, UFC president Dana White confirmed Poirier will fight for the lightweight title, currently held by Charles Oliveira.

However, Poirier has insisted his rivalry with McGregor is not over just yet.

"We are gonna fight again whether it's in the octagon or on the sidewalk," he told reporters.

"You don't say the stuff he said. He was saying that he was going to murder me, you don't say stuff like that.

"There is a chance somebody could die and you don't say that, you don't wish it on anybody."

Dustin Poirier has no doubt he will face Conor McGregor again "in the octagon or on the sidewalk" following his UFC 264 victory in their trilogy fight.

Poirier was awarded the win after McGregor suffered an apparent broken leg towards the end of the first round, leaving the octagon on a stretcher with his leg in a splint.

The Irishman continued to trash talk Poirier even after the defeat. Poirier claimed McGregor repeated threats to murder him that he made in the lead-up to the fight.

Asked in his post-fight media conference if the rivalry was over, Poirier replied: "We are gonna fight again whether it's in the octagon or on the sidewalk.

"You don't say the stuff he said. He was saying that he was going to murder me, you don't say stuff like that.

"There is a chance somebody could die and you don't say that, you don't wish it on anybody."

UFC president Dana White said Poirier would fight for the lightweight title, which is held by Charles Oliveira.

However, Poirier is in no rush to start preparing for such a challenge.

"I feel like I've been preparing for a fight since last year, because I was getting ready for Conor in January, I fought him, as soon as the fight ended I knew that was next so I got home from Abu Dhabi and started training for that fight," he added. 

"I had one trip I got to decompress a little bit but I was getting ready to fight him again.

"The last thing I want to do is go home and sign a contract and start getting ready right away. I just need to get home and think about some things and spend some time with my family."

Dustin Poirier has won UFC 264 by TKO after Connor McGregor suffered a nasty leg injury at the end of the first round on Saturday in Las Vegas.

American Poirier was firmly in control, dominating the early exchanges, before McGregor attempted a punch and fell on his own left leg causing an apparent fracture and a doctor's stoppage.

McGregor left the octagon with a leg splint on in a stretcher, casting doubts on his future in the sport.

"He fractured in one of the checks at the beginning of the fight," Poirier said after the fight. "Then it broke on a punch, for sure.

"When I pointed at him at the beginning of the fight, that's when I checked a good kick and I felt a crack. it was probably cracked and then on the twist of the punch it finished."

Despite the defeat and being unable to stand, the Irishman continued to trash talk Poirier as he had in the lead-up to the fight when he said he would "murder" the American.

Poirier added: "There's no holds barred with the trash talk but murder is something you don't clown around with.

"This guy was saying 'he was going to murder me, I was going to leave her in a coffin'. You don’t talk to people like that. I hope this guy gets home safe to his beautiful family."

He added: "This guy's a dirtbag… Karma's not a b****, she's a mirror and this guy's said the wrong s*** and I've been busting my ass."

Poirier had no doubt he deserved the win despite the circumstances of the victory, in the latest edition of their trilogy.

"Sometimes these things happen. I beat the guy," he said.

Poirier becomes the eighth fighter in UFC history to earn 20 wins.

Dustin Poirier will face Conor McGregor at UFC 264 in Las Vegas on Saturday in one of the year's most highly anticipated fights.

The trilogy bout take place at the T-Mobile Arena with a 100 per cent crowd capacity.

"I am so happy to finally be able to say: Vegas is back," UFC president Dana White said when the fight was announced in April.

McGregor had previously claimed the bout was off during an expletive-laden exchange on Twitter and that heated build-up has continued.

Poirier took victory in their previous showdown at UFC 257 in January in Abu Dhabi with a second-round knockout, after which McGregor conceded the result was "a tough one to swallow".

McGregor, who described his opponent's performance three months ago as "phenomenal", stopped the 32-year-old American in 106 seconds in their first encounter in September 2014.

The former two-weight world champion, who is also 32, has not won a UFC bout since January last year.

Fight build-up has been as entertaining you would expect, with McGregor aiming a kick at Poirier as the duo went head to head at the pre-fight news conference on Thursday.

Here are some of the best quotes from the event which took place with both fighters and a large crowd.
 

FIGHTING TALK FROM MCGREGOR

McGregor did not hold back when he explained what he planned to do with Poirier.

"I'm gonna go through his head, put holes in and take it off his shoulders - that's the goal here!

"He's done here, this is it for him. This is the end of the road. 

"Even after that last fight saying, 'Oh I don't love this [fighting] anymore' - he knew what was coming, he knew the smacks he took.

"Saturday night he's getting walked around that octagon like a dog and put to sleep."

POIRIER RESPECTS PUNICHING POWER

And Poirier did not dismiss the threat posed by the Irishman.

"I think he has a big advantage in some areas like his punching power.

"That's been worked on for years, and I'm sure some of it's God gifted, his timing is very good, but I truly believe he is a well-rounded martial artist.

"But he's so successful in those areas that he doesn't have to go in there and shoot for a takedown because he believes he's going to finish the fight on the feet.

"He doesn't have to play jiu-jitsu because he's so confident in what's been working for him, he's knocked out a bunch of greats. Don't fix it if it's not broken, I truly believe he is a well-rounded fighter."

MCGREGOR PROMISES CAREER NIGHT

A crowning moment for McGregor came when he defeated Eddie Alvarez in November 2016 to become the first UFC fighter to be world champion in two weight divisions simultaneously.

He insists there is better still to come from him.

"I'm an evolution of that guy. I'm better than that man. I feel like I've come full circle and I look forward to showing it.

"That night was widely regarded as the single greatest performance in UFC history. This performance on Saturday night, I'm going to top it."

POIRIER DOUBTS THAT IS POSSIBLE

But Poirier does not think McGregor is the same force he once was.

"For me, the aura's not there anymore. Not anymore. 

"A very dangerous fighter sitting right there for sure but I see a man. 

"You guys in the crowd, cheer it up, have fun. But I see a man that I've defeated and know that I can defeat again."

 

MCGREGOR COMPARES POIRIER TO BUSTER DOUGLAS

James 'Buster' Douglas achieved one of sport's greatest upsets by beating Mike Tyson in 1990 but immediately lost his next fight and his titles to Evander Holyfield.

McGregor says the same fate awaits Poirier.

"He's going to be known for that [like Buster Douglas].

"It was a fluke win and I'm going to correct it on Saturday night. It's on now."

POIRIER SAYS HE IS DIFFERENT

McGregor was asked by a fan why he was being so confrontational with Poirier in the build up to this fight after showing significant respect to his opponent around their second bout.

Poirier interjected with a put down, saying "Because he got knocked the f*** out!" before going on to criticise the falling quality of McGregor's trash talk.

"He was not McGregor fast but McGregor sleep. Respect to him and everything that he's done [but his trash talk is] f*****g weak. 

"I don't hate anybody up here. I'm in a different place mentally. 

"I am straight business. I've never really had that hype pushed. I know who I am. I'm the same guy and it's easy to be me.

"I knew this [rematch] was next. As soon as I got to my hotel room that night [in January], I knew this was next. I've kind of been preparing for this fight since that fight ended."

TALE OF THE TAPE

Poirier has 27 wins, six losses and one no contest on his record, while McGregor has 22 wins and five defeats.

Both men are southpaws, 5' 9" and 155 lbs, though McGregor has the reach advantage (74” to 72”).

In their last fight, Poirier attempted more significant strikes than McGregor (91 to 66).

He also landed more, 52 per cent compared to 43 for the Irishman.

McGregor landed 25 times, 23 to the head and just twice to the legs, while Poirer made an impact in both areas, with 30 significant strikes to the head and 18 to the legs.

New UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira told Conor McGregor "I'm going to put you on your a**", but warned the former two-weight king he needs to focus on a rematch with Dustin Poirier first.

Oliveira made a narrow escape in the first round against Michael Chandler at UFC 262 on Saturday before dropping his opponent with the first punch of the second to claim the title vacated by Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Afterwards, McGregor congratulated Oliveira on Twitter, while hinting at a potential fight with the Brazilian.

He wrote: "Congrats to Oliveira on becoming the 11th UFC lightweight champion. Wonder who Twelve is..."

And Oliveira is clearly keen to face the Irishman on home soil but only if McGregor avenges his defeat to Poirier in January.

"Conor, worry about Dustin," Oliveira told reporters.

"Conor, since you're so tough: First of all, you beat Dustin, and then you come over to Brazil and I'm going to put you on your a**.

"First, he's got to get past Dustin. He's one of these guys that just talks a lot. He's got to beat Dustin first."

UFC superstar Conor McGregor has reiterated he is interested in purchasing Manchester United and has also held discussions over buying shares in Celtic.

The 32-year-old has accumulated significant wealth through a number of high-profile bouts, including a crossover into boxing when taking on Floyd Mayweather in 2017.

He moved into the world of business when launching a whiskey brand in 2018 and the Irishman is now looking to add a sports team to his profile.

McGregor revealed last month he was considering buying United amid the fallout from the collapsed Super League proposal, with the Glazers under pressure to sell up.

Pressed on Twitter whether that remains the case, McGregor said: "A conversation came up regarding Celtic first to be honest. To acquire shares from [majority shareholder] Dermot Desmond.

"I am certainly interested in acquiring a sports team at some stage! 

"Both Celtic and Man United are teams I like for sure. But I am open. I feel I could do big things for a club."

Irish businessman Desmond is the largest individual shareholder of Scottish giants Celtic and previously held a stake in United before selling them to the Glazers in 2005.

McGregor, who has made no secret of his admiration for Celtic, was knocked out by Dustin Poirier in his last fight four months ago and will face the same opponent in July.

Dustin Poirier will face Conor McGregor at UFC 264 in Las Vegas this year.

The much-anticipated trilogy fight will take place at the T-Mobile Arena on July 10, UFC president Dana White confirmed on Wednesday.

"I am so happy to finally be able to say: Vegas is back," he said in a video posted on social media.

"This summer, Las Vegas is back open for business and on July 10, UFC 264 will be at the T-Mobile Arena at 100 per cent capacity.

"This card will be headlined by the third fight between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor."

The update comes after McGregor claimed the bout was off on Monday during an expletive-laden exchange on Twitter.

Poirier claimed victory in their previous showdown at UFC 257 in January in Abu Dhabi with a second-round knockout, after which McGregor conceded the result was "a tough one to swallow".

McGregor, who described his opponent's performance three months ago as "phenomenal", stopped the 32-year-old American in 106 seconds in their first encounter in September 2014.

The former two-weight world champion, who is also 32, has not won a UFC bout since January last year.

Dustin Poirier wants a shot at the lightweight title in his next bout and is unsure if the UFC would agree to that as part of a trilogy fight with Conor McGregor.

Khabib Nurmagomedov still holds the lightweight belt with the UFC trying to lure him out of retirement, though Poirier has taken to declaring himself the champion in the meantime.

The 32-year-old won the interim title in April 2019 but was submitted by Khabib in a unification fight at UFC 242.

Poirier put himself in pole position for a shot at the undisputed crown by beating McGregor, who won their first fight in September 2014, by TKO at UFC 257 in January.

Both are open to a third fight, but Poirier has his eyes on the title and does not think another meeting with McGregor would provide that at the moment.

Asked if he would fight McGregor for the lightweight title, Poirier told ESPN: "I'm not sure if the UFC would do that.

"Why wasn't that one for the belt? Politics? We're chasing Khabib? What's going on here?

"I have no clue what direction [the UFC is going to] move in. Obviously [Justin] Gaethje's coming off a loss too, then there's [Michael] Chandler and [Charles] Oliveira. I need to go and look at the rankings to see the order we're in now.

"It's 1-1 [with McGregor]. I knocked him out; he knocked me out. The rubber match, it does make sense."

He added: "Who else has put the resume together that I have in my last six, seven fights, whatever it has been?

"Also beating Conor, a two-weight world champion, adds another former world champion to the list of guys I've taken out. I think I'm most deserving to be in a title fight out of all these guys, but I don't know who it's going to be against."

Justin Gaethje said it is "preposterous" if Conor McGregor gets a title shot following his shock loss to Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 as he threatened to quit the octagon.

McGregor was sensationally knocked out in the second round by Poirier in Abu Dhabi, where the Irish star was fighting for the first time in 12 months, while it was just his third appearance in the UFC since the start of 2018.

The former lightweight champion has already called for a third bout against Poirier, who he beat in 2014, and McGregor's coach John Kavanagh wants a rematch to be a title showdown.

But should president Dana White and UFC give McGregor a title contest, American Gaethje (22-3) said he will definitely consider his future.

"For them to come out and say he wants a title shot next, rematch with Poirier, they're f****** i*****," Gaethje, who has not fought since his defeat to unbeaten champion Khabib Nurmagomedov in October, told ESPN.

"He's been treated special over and over and he didn't capitalise on this opportunity. That event was for him, it was for him to win.

"He wants to be Mr. Humble now, but you know he would have been an a****** had he won that fight. I don't feel bad for him, I'm happy for Poirier, I'm happy Poirier went out there did his job, and finished him.

"I love seeing a loudmouth get knocked out, there is nothing that makes me happier. Seeing a piece of s*** get put down, that was great, I loved it.

"He's not fighting for a title. I will think about never fighting in the UFC again if he fights for a title. That would be preposterous. He's sitting at number six, he's won one fight in his entire life in the lightweight division.

"He picks and chooses who he fights. I would love to fight him but I don't think it should be next. But he ain't gonna fight me."

Floyd Mayweather Jr does not think anyone wants to see Conor McGregor return to boxing to face Manny Pacquiao following the Irishman's defeat to Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 on Sunday.

Poirier became the first man to knockout McGregor in mixed martial arts with a string of punches to the head during the second round of their lightweight bout in Abu Dhabi.

It was the former UFC featherweight and lightweight champion's first fight in a year and his second since being submitted by Khabib Nurmagomedov in October 2018.

His bout with Nurmagomedov came after he switched to boxing to take on former five-division champion Mayweather, who came out of retirement and put his 49-0 record on the line.

Mayweather triumphed over McGregor by TKO in round 10, but the Irishman has been linked with a return to the ring to face Pacquiao – an eight-division champion and the WBA welterweight title holder.

However, it has been reported Pacquiao is closing in on an agreement with Ryan Garcia and McGregor's loss to Poirier will have done his chances of facing the Filipino no good.

Mayweather likened the prospect of Pacquiao, who he defeated by unanimous decision in their long-awaited welterweight bout in 2015, taking on McGregor as "my leftovers eating leftovers".

Sharing an image of a post asking why Mayweather is hated for the way he carries himself, but McGregor is loved for acting in the same manner, he wrote: "I seen this post and my take on it is that the world knows Con Artist McLoser can steal everything from me and be loved but I'm hated. That just lets you all know that racism still exist.

"Just know, that bum will never be me or be on my level. I'm just built different, my mindset is on another planet, my skills are second to none, I'm a natural born winner and yes I talk a lot of trash, but every time I back it up! This is what they hate.

"It's sad that you can be a poor black kid from the ghetto that has dealt with racism your whole life and work extremely hard to put yourself and your family in a better position, and most of the hate comes from my own people.

"Conor cannot even win in his own sport, but talking about coming back to boxing to fight Pacquiao. Nobody wants to see that, it's like my leftovers eating leftovers."

Prior to his fight with Poirier, McGregor said he was committed to a prolonged stint in the UFC's lightweight division.

Despite his loss, the 32-year-old said he feels there are still plenty of match-ups in the Octagon that interest him.

Dustin Poirier declared "I'm the champ" after defeating Conor McGregor by technical knockout at UFC 257 in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

A string of punches to McGregor's head in the second round made Poirier a leading contender for the UFC lightweight title, which is still held by Khabib Nurmagomedov despite the Russian having retired.

Poirier said he would be open to a rematch with McGregor or a bout with Nate Diaz but ruled out a fight against Michael Chandler, who defeated Dan Hooker on his UFC debut in the co-main event.

Asked if a fight with former Bellator lightweight champion Chandler interested him, Porier said: "No, it does not. Respect to Chandler, great win over a guy, but to come in and beat a guy I just beat and get a title shot?

"Dude, I've been 27, 28 fights in the UFC, trying everything, fighting the toughest of the toughest guys to get my hands on gold. He should fight Charles Oliveira or something, let them go at it.

"That doesn't really interest me at this point. I'll go and sell hot sauce if that's the case.

"It's not even my position, I've just been putting in the work, that's why I can sit here and talk about it because I've been in the division and the UFC for a long time fighting the best of the best to him.

"No disrespect to him … it's just my feelings towards the division and the sport. I feel like I lost to Khabib, I came out and put on a fight of the year for you guys, got my hand raised against a top-five opponent after that, then I come in here and Khabib doesn't want to come back, and one of the biggest fights you can get I knock this guy out too.

"Khabib reiterates he doesn't want to fight anymore. Dude, I'm the champ.

"Fighting a new guy to the UFC who just beat a guy whose coming off a loss that I just beat for the belt, that's not exciting to me."

Poirier ranked the victory over McGregor as one of his best, particularly because the Irishman won their first meeting in 2014 and had never been knocked out before.

"It's up there, especially finishing a guy who's never been finished like that, it's up there man," he said.

"Touching that UFC interim belt was so important to me, and putting my hands on the undisputed world title before this is all said and done is what I want to absolutely do, but this is a big one."

Poirier lost his first and only shot at the title when he was submitted at UFC 242 by Nurmagomedov, who bowed out after making Justin Gaethje tap at UFC 254 last October.

Asked whether Gaethje or Oliveira was more deserving of a chance to fight him for the lightweight belt, he replied: "Oliveira, because he's never had the opportunity.

"Gaethje just came out here and got beat. As I did. Not a knock on Gaethje, but he lost. Oliveira probably, or let them fight to see who gets it. There are so many tough fighters in the 155-pound division."

Conor McGregor called out Khabib Nurmagomedov after the retired UFC lightweight champion criticised him following his defeat to Dustin Poirier at UFC 257.

Poirier became the first man to knockout former featherweight and lightweight champion McGregor following a flurry of punches to the head in the second round in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

Nurmagomedov was in attendance and Dana White said the Russian told him he was "so many levels above these guys" after informing the UFC president he needed to see "something spectacular" to be tempted out of retirement.

Following McGregor's defeat, Nurmagomedov tweeted: "This is what happened [sic], when you change your team, leave the sparring partners who made you a champion and sparring with little kids, far away from reality."

McGregor was submitted by Khabib at UFC 229 in October 2018, a fight that was overshadowed by a post-bout brawl outside the Octagon. The fight with Poirier was just the Irishman's second since then.

Asked if he had a response to Nurmagomedov's remarks, McGregor said: "My team has been the team since day one, I've not changed anything. It is what it is, respect the athletes. That's the character for the man for sure, behind the mask.

"What's he wanna do? Does he wanna come back or no? Because he's not throwing any leg kicks. I got up off the ground against Dustin, I turned Dustin. Look at little pockets of that sequence.

"Styles make fights, every fight is a different fight. That's why all this prestige people try and hold onto, I don't hold onto that. Whether someone has multiple wins or multiple losses, every fight between every man is different. That's it.

"Dustin's style played into it today. He has the durability, he has the experience and he has that leg kick in his arsenal now. I'll adjust and keep going.

"But if he [Nurmagomedov] wants to have his disrespectful comments, come back and let's go again my man. I'm ready for it. That's fighting talk. If you're coming back, come back."

McGregor has lost two of his past three fights in UFC and White predicted the 32-year-old will either become hungrier for more success or leave the sport behind.

"There's two ways this goes, hungrier or 'I'm done.' He's got the money," said White.

"It's like 'Rocky III', when you get off a 310-foot yacht, you're living that good life, it's tough to be a savage when you're living like he lives and has the money that he has. On his way up he was a young, hungry kid and he wanted nice things … he's got everything he ever wanted now, so I don't know."

McGregor, however, suggested there are still a number of battles that interest him.

"I'll certainly regroup and pick myself up, get up off the floor and go again and that's it. Styles make fight and there's many great stylistic matches out there," he said.

"Myself and Dustin are 1-1, myself and Nate [Diaz] are 1-1. There's many good matchups for me and I'll adopt a different approach for the trilogy with Dustin because those leg kicks are not to be messed with – the low calf kick I've never experienced that and it was a good one."

He added: "It's heartbreaking [to lose]. It's hard to take. The highest highs and the lowest lows in this game. My leg is completely dead and even though I thought I was checking them it was just sinking into the muscle at the front of the leg and it was badly compromised. It's like an American football in my shoe at the minute. It is what it is. Dustin fought a hell of a fight.

"I have no excuses here. It was a phenomenal performance from Dustin. I'll go back and watch the full fight and get a better grasp on it, but the leg was compromised, and I was rushing the shots a little bit and I didn't adjust. That's that. It's a bitter pill to swallow.

"Me and Dustin now are 1-1. For sure we'll go again."

Dana White revealed Khabib Nurmagomedov told him he was "so many levels above" his rivals, making it unlikely the undefeated star will come out of retirement.

Khabib (29-0) sensationally retired after beating Justin Gaethje in October last year.

White has been pushing for the Russian to return for a 30th fight, but that seems unlikely to happen.

After Dustin Poirier stunned Conor McGregor, the UFC president revealed he had a conversation with Khabib.

"I did talk to Khabib," White said.

"He said to me, 'Dana, be honest with yourself, you know I'm so many levels above these guys, I beat these guys.'

"I don't know, I don't know, but it doesn't sound very positive so we'll see.

"I told you guys before he won't hold the division up. He already retired, he's basically retired, I'm the one that's been trying to get him to do one more."

White confirmed McGregor and Poirier would likely fight for the lightweight title if Khabib did not return.

Conor McGregor lamented his inactivity after being stunned by Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 on Sunday.

The Irishman was knocked out in the second round by Poirier, the man he beat in September 2014, in Abu Dhabi.

But it was McGregor's first fight in 12 months and just his third since the start of 2018.

The former lightweight champion said his lack of competitive action was the difference.

"You know, it's hard to overcome inactivity over long periods of time and that's just it," McGregor said.

"The leg kicks were good, that low calf kick was good, the leg was dead and just wasn't as comfortable as I needed to be.

"It's the inactivity, but Dustin is some fighter and if you're in here, if you put in the time in here, you're going to get cosy in here and that's it.

"I have to dust it off and come back and that's what I will do."

McGregor said he was "gutted" and was keen to fight again this year.

Poirier, meanwhile, believes he is the lightweight champion – if Khabib Nurmagomedov (29-0) is unwilling to come out of retirement.

"I felt like this was a title fight," the American said.

"If Khabib's not coming back, me and Conor are the two best guys, I think this was a title fight. I'm the champion."

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