McGregor was the victor via first-round knockout when he and Poirier fought one another at featherweight in 2014, but ‘The Diamond’ exacted his revenge on ‘Fight Island’ in Abu Dhabi, winning their lightweight rematch by knocking out ‘Notorious’ in the second round.
And Khabib, whose successful title defence against McGregor in 2018 followed a bitter build-up that spilled into a post-fight brawl and enduring rivalry, took to Twitter after the event to hit out at his old rival.
“This is what happened, when you change your team, leave the sparring partners who made you a champion and sparring with little kids, far away from reality,” wrote the Russian, who retired undefeated in October after retaining his lightweight championship against Justin Gaethje.
This is what happened, when you change your team, leave the sparring partners who made you a champion and sparring with little kids, far away from reality.
— khabib nurmagomedov (@TeamKhabib) January 24, 2021
Despite his retirement three months ago, Khabib has not officially vacated the UFC lightweight belt, with the promotion’s president Dana White saying last week that ‘The Eagle’ (29-0) would consider fighting at least once more if he were to be impressed by either McGregor or Poirier in UFC 257’s main event, or by fellow lightweights Dan Hooker and Michael Chandler in the card’s co-main event.
Chandler, a former three-time Bellator lightweight champion, was making his UFC debut against Hooker, and the American produced a stunning performance to knock out the New Zealander in the first round.
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