The attention of the entire MMA world will be focused on the Octagon this Saturday when Conor McGregor faces Dustin Poirier in one of the most highly-anticipated rubber matches in UFC history.
The fact that Mcgregor beat Poirier via technical knockout in their first encounter in the featherweight division at UFC 178 in 2014 and the American have won the second encounter seven years later at UFC 257 has made that third fight even more intriguing.
Bellator featherweight champ Patricio Freire, who is in the midst of preparations to defend his belt against A.J. McKee on July 31, believes McGregor’s superior technique will be a key factor in the fight.
"McGregor is good at revenge. Actually, he was winning the first fight [before the finish],” Freire said. “Conor may talk a lot of s—t, but he is much more technical than Poirier. I think he will come more prepared this time and win decisively.
Meanwhile, UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira might have the most interest of anyone in the UFC 264 main event. “Do Bronx” is coming from Brazil with his coach, Diego Lima, and will have a front row seat for the Saturday’s trilogy fight at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Oliveira sees a different outcome than the one that Freire predicts, however.
"I have no doubt it will be a tough fight like the first one. I see McGregor dominating the first and second rounds, but Dustin resisting and getting strong after the third,” Oliveira said. “I believe Dustin has evolved more physically and mentaly and will win again.”
As far as rooting interests go, the Brazilian champion can’t deny that a title defense against the Irish star would be much more lucrative.
"Of course Conor would bring much more money,” Oliviera said. “If I could choose [an opponent], of course it would be him. But I´m really not too concerned about that now. The most important thing to me is to have a great camp and be healthy and ready to defend my title. I´m sure It will be a war either against Conor or Poirier.”
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