Earlier this week, as the planned trilogy between Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier continued to move in the right direction, I wrote a caption on social media: To all the marbles.

Well, the title rubbed some people the wrong way. How can I say it’s for all the marbles if they don’t have a UFC belt on? Some have gone so far as to say that the stakes are not even, because this trilogy-ending fight has more to do with money than determining who is the best lightweight in the world. Poirier had the chance to fight for the belt, but opted for a more lucrative payday against the biggest star in MMA history.


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The UFC returns to ABC where Kevin Holland tries to bounce back from his loss three weeks ago by taking on contender Marvin Vettori. The Netherlands have won five straight in 2020 and hope to avoid going 0-2 until early 2021.

UFC Fight Night: Holland vs. Vettori
– Saturday, 10. April, UFC Apex, Las Vegas
Main card: 3 p.m. ET on ABC/ESPN+
Preliminary rounds:12 h. AND on ABC/ESPN+

Subscribe to ESPN+ for exclusive live UFC events, weigh-ins and more, Ariel and the Bad Guy, Dana White’s Contender Series and more exclusive MMA content.

The answer was correct, but let me tell you why so much is at stake in this trilogy battle. The series is 1-1, and I don’t foresee a scenario where McGregor and Poirier face off after UFC 264 on the 10th. Juli will never fight again. As for their rivalry, there are all kinds of things.

But then, it’s not strange to say that the entire history of McGregor’s athletic career could be at stake in this fight.

What about the fighter McGregor from now on? Not a superstar. Not an entertainer. If he were to retire now, how would we describe his sporting achievements?

Conor McGregor (left) and Dustin Poirier face each other on the 10th at UFC 264. July will meet for the third time. Jeff Bottari/Zuffa Ltd.

His UFC record is 10-3.

He is 7-0 at featherweight, 1-2 at lightweight and 2-1 at welterweight.

His record in UFC title fights is 3-1.

Of course, this is a phenomenal career in the UFC. It’s a career that many martial artists can only dream of in terms of competition, not to mention the millions and millions of dollars that McGregor has pocketed.

The question is this. Will this be a career that McGregor would have been happy with in 2013 when he entered the UFC? If you showed this resume to McGregor, would he be happy? Recording on less than 500 easy. A slightly better record at welterweight, although all three of those fights – two against Nate Diaz and one against Donald Cowboy Cerrone – were against fighters who spent most of their careers at lightweight.

Would he have been satisfied with two UFC championships but no title defense? Would he have been happy to learn that one of his losses at lightweight came against arch-rival Khabib Nurmagomedov, who claims to be the best lightweight in the world, while McGregor was technically in that division?

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I can tell you right now that the 2013 version of McGregor would not have been pleased. In fact, I would have guessed that he would consider this resume some sort of failure in terms of his expectations.

And that probably sounds surprisingly rude, doesn’t it? But that was and is McGregor’s mentality – that he is the best fighter on the planet. Even in defeats, whether it was Diaz in 2016, Nurmagomedov in 2018, Poirier in 2021 and even boxing against Floyd Mayweather in 2017, McGregor has always handled setbacks well. Normally, within hours of a defeat, he determines the reasons for the defeat and arranges a rematch. Because the idea of anyone being better than him never appealed to him.

Even with a 1-2 MMA record in the last 3.5 years, McGregor continues to act like the best fighter in the world, and there were reasons to give him the benefit of the doubt whether he signed or not.

He took a year off to win nine figures in a boxing match against Mayweather, which anyone would have done. He took on the monumental task of fighting Nurmagomedov in his first fight since that break and lost in the fourth round. And he wanted to be active in 2020, but couldn’t because of travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After killing Cerrone on the 18th. January 2020 defeated in 40 seconds, McGregor did not fight again until he was knocked out on the 23rd. January by knockout in the second round over Poirier, after which McGregor said they could not fight as part-time fighters.

McGregor said his downtime was the year before he lost to Poirier on the 23rd. January played a part in the defeat. It won’t be taken into account this time. Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

This may seem like an excuse for McGregor’s losses, but they are legitimate factors when you consider he is fighting the best in the world.

But if McGregor is the 10. July’s second consecutive loss to Poirier, there will be no trophy. History will remember that Poirier was better. History will record that McGregor claimed to be the best heavyweight in the world at the end of 2015, but didn’t even have a winning record in the five years since.

He will have a lot of money and be remembered as a superstar who changed the game, even though he had legal problems outside the cage. But he will not be remembered as one of the greatest fighters. And I still think McGregor wants this for himself. From this point of view, the 10. July, that is, for all the marbles.

frequently asked questions

Does Conor McGregor have any titles?

wiki ‘ Conor_McGregor

McGregor vs. Cerrone – the title?

Although the welterweight fight is not a title, it is expected to top the pay-per-view figures as McGregor, 31, will earn a record £80 million.

How much will Donald Cerrone win against McGregor?

According to the UFC 246 payroll, Cerrone was paid $200,000 for the fight, and he could have made another $200,000 if he won.

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