Conor McGregor has admitted he made a massive mistake in his fight with Dustin Poirier.
The Notorious One entered the Fight Island bout as the overwhelming favourite but was systematically dismantled by his American opponent.
Poirier executed a cunning game plan to perfection, nullifying McGregor's movement with a barrage of brutal leg kicks before flattening him with a flurry of vicious punches.
The result sent shockwaves through the world of combat sports, with many questioning whether McGregor was still cut out for the demands of the UFC Octagon.
However, in a statement recently posted to Instagram, McGregor admitted he had one eye on a fight with Manny Pacquiao and wound up playing right into Poirier's hands.
McGregor, who made no secrets of the potential for a fight with Pacquiao following UFC 257, woefully underestimated Poirier and paid the price for it.
"I enjoyed racking up some more time inside the famed UFC Octagon," he wrote.
"40 seconds in 3 years is all I’d had up to this bout. I was savouring every second and enjoying my work. A little single disciplined in my approach and stance with mostly boxing.
It’s what I get for picking this bout and opponent as a precursor to a boxing match against Pacman.
"I deserved to get the legs kicked off me going in with this thinking. This is not the game to play around with. Besides this tho my shots where sharp and I was in full control.
"Albeit the leg attacks where building up on me throughout the course. 18 in total thrown at me, with the final one buckling my leg fully, that was that."
However, McGregor did claim on several occasions that he is far from done with MMA. In truth, he did look very sharp right up until the moment his leg buckled and he outlined his desire to have one more go at Poirier.
"A well fought fight by The Diamond. 1 a piece now with a Trilogy bout for all the marbles! Wow! Exciting!
"Not a trilogy I was expecting, nor the tactical affair I was anticipating, but I’d be lying if I said this wasn’t meant to be. This is exactly how this was always meant to be! Buzzing!"
A third bout with Poirier seems like the best course of action for McGregor now.
With the Pacquiao bout he so covets off the table anyway, it seems the only way to resuscitate his career is by giving Poirier the respect he deserves.
If both men enter the bout at the peak of their powers, then it promises to be a real ding-dong battle.News Now - Sport News