Khabib Nurmagomedov hails coach Mendez after cornering ‘Dagestani gangster’ cousin Abubakar in UFC 260 win (VIDEO) — RT Sport News

Khabib Nurmagomedov’s cousin, Abubakar, earned the first UFC win of his career with a dominant display in a grudge match against Jared Gooden – and the ex-champion was a prominent figure in the octagon during his decision victory.

Appearing for the first time since losing on his UFC debut in November 2019, the welterweight made light of Gooden’s pre-bout claims that all Russian fighters had the same reliance on going to ground, mixing it up while appearing to wobble his opponent on a few occasions.

Nurmagomedov had cheekily suggested that Gooden should take up underwater chess as an alternative sport after hearing about his generalizations, and his opponent had also directed a barrage of crude insults towards the Russian’s family in a futile attempt to antagonize him in the build-up.

If there had been an issue for Nurmagomedov in fight week, it was perhaps his struggle to make weight, helped by his illustrious cousin, who revealed that he had stayed up late into the night to keep his relative company while he went through the cutting rituals required to balance the scales.

The former lightweight king clearly played a high-profile role during the fight, offering Nurmagomedov advice and instructions on his way to victory.

“Khabib getting that coach of the year,” wrote fellow UFC welterweight Belal Muhammad on Twitter, adding that Nurmagomedov had produced a “great performance” that “showed a little bit of everything”.

Speaking to RT Sport ahead of the fight, Nurmagomedov confirmed that Khabib took the lead role in some training sessions during the week, although he emphasized that Javier Mendez, the trainer who guided Khabib to some of his greatest victories, retained the final say during training camps.

Nurmagomedov clearly has a close relationship with Mendez, sharing playful social media videos with the coach as well as sessions alongside former champion Daniel Cormier, who dubbed him the ‘Dagestani gangster’.

Speaking before the fight, Mendez published a photo of Nurmagomedov bearing his nickname on a t-shirt, accompanied by the immortal phrase “father’s plan” – words synonymous with his former mentor and Khabib’s late father, Abdulmanap.

“Dagestan Gangster is going to battle today in the UFC,” wrote Mendez on Instagram. “This guy is family. Proud of this guy.”

Khabib used his account, which has almost 28 million followers, to share a photo of the team in the immediate aftermath of what he described as “another big win for our team.”

“We win together and we lose together,” he added. “My brothers – everything for me.

“We are proud of you, brother. We know you can do even better. We are blessed with our coach.

“He is the best in the world. Thank you for everything, coach. We love you.”

Watching Nurmagomedov scrap on the undercard of the headline fight between heavyweights Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou, a fan said: “Can’t imagine how incredibly hard it must be for Abubakar Nurmagomedov to go in the octagon everytime.

“Not only because of that family name, but also because he’s Khabib’s first cousin. Happy he got the win today. Looked dominant on the feet and on the ground.”

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Alexander Volkanovski’s UFC 260 title defence off after COVID-19 positive

Australia’s only current UFC champion Alexander Volkanovski’s featherweight title defence against Brian Ortega has been called off after the Australia tested positive for COVID-19.

The even was meant to be the co-main event at UFC 260 but Volkanovski revealed he’d received a positive test.

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The news was confirmed during the UFC Fight Night on Sunday with the UFC still to announce another date for the rescheduled fight.

It’s another reminder that while vaccines are being distributed across the world that the COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing.

Volkanovski took to Instagram to post a statement to share his devastation that the fight was called off.

Volkanovski wrote on social media: “So devastated to share that I’ve tested positive for COVID-19 and my fight is off and will be rescheduled.

“I tested negative leaving Australia, negative before entering the UFC bubble but my latest test was positive.”

“We have worked so hard getting ready for this fight and I’m absolutely gutted this has happened.

“We followed every policy and process to remain covid free but it wasn’t meant to be this time.

“Thanks to everyone here in the States for your support since arriving and to everyone back home and around the world for your positive messages.

“To my fans, I’m certain I’ll be bouncing back stronger than ever before.”

Volkanovski won the featherweight world title with a unanimous decision at UFC 245 against Max Holloway before defending the title in a controversial split decision at UFC 251.

Ortega also posted a video to social media

“I know you would have taken the fight no matter what, even with COVID,” Ortega said. “That’s the kind of human you are, and I respect that. Hope you get better, hope you heal up fast and we’ll postpone it and reschedule it for when we’ve got to. Stay sharp and whenever this s*** is meant to happen it’ll happen.”

Fans were quick to react to the news.

The UFC schedule has been tough for overseas fighters with those from Australia and New Zealand needing to quarantine for two weeks on return.

Volkanovski spoke to before UFC 260 on how difficult it would be to be apart from his wife and two young daughters during the fight camp and quarantine, which was a four week commitment.

“It is hard, it’s definitely hard but at the same time, this is how it is,” he said. “These are the card the world has been dealt at the moment. Anyone who knows me knows, I always talk about adapting to what’s in front of you. There’s no point in dwelling or sooking about it. It’s not what I can’t do and be there helping, it’s what can I do. I can go over there and win the title and make some good money. But we’ve also got FaceTime so we can see each other and II can be as present as I can be.

“It’s about adapting and accepting the situation and making it work.”

Not even being able to get in the octagon makes the blow even more brutal.

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UFC legend Bruce Buffer explains why Russian star Nurmagomedov needs ‘eye of the tiger’ to return (VIDEO) — RT Sport News

UFC octagon announcer Bruce Buffer has spoken about his relationship with Khabib Nurmagomedov and his late father, predicting that the lightweight champion will return if he is motivated like iconic film character Rocky Balboa.

After 25 years as the voice of the UFC, it is hard to imagine a night under the lights without the flamboyant, cinematic showmanship of Buffer.

From brightly burning prospect to the man to beat – and Buffer considers both categories of fighter to be just as worthy and in need of his inimitable introductions – Nurmagomedov’s fights have had at least one other constant, as well as his hand raised at the end of them.

Buffer has watched on while the Russian and the likes of Conor McGregor have transformed the UFC from a niche interest to a mainstream sport.

That explosive growth has allowed the man who invented his immortal catchphrase, “it’s time”, to hone his MC skills on a far more frequent basis than he did when UFC events only took place three times a year at the start of his time with the promotion.

Now a beloved veteran and as much a part of the fabric of the sport as the canvas on which its stars scrap, Buffer offers a resounding appraisal of Nurmagomedov among the huge number of fighters he speaks fondly of.

“Khabib’s a man of honor,” Buffer said when asked about his experiences with the unbeaten Nurmagomedov, speaking to RT Sport of his pleasure at becoming so familiar with a name that many announcers might have been left tongue-tied by when initially learning its pronunciation.

“I like Khabib a lot. We get along really well, I liked his dad a lot.

“Khabib is the type of fighter who needs to be lifted. He needs an opponent that’s going to lift him, that’s going to make him want to go train and do what he does and go do the Rocky V mountain snow climbs and everything else while music is playing in his ears.”

Amateur psychologists aiming to imagine how negotiations between UFC president Dana White and Nurmagomedov are going would do well to ask Buffer for his thoughts.

Few men have had such an intimate insight into the career progressions of both men. Buffer describes White as a “maverick” and admires the bullish businessman’s continued passion – a word he never shies away from using to define his own approach and one of the key sources of his success.

Nurmagomedov could have shared the spotlight with Buffer for the last time when he beat Justin Gaethje in Abu Dhabi last October, sending shockwaves shuddering through the UFC by declaring his retirement afterwards.

Buffer believes that the passing of Nurmagomedov’s inspirational father, Abdulmanap, played a pivotal part in an announcement that he feels was far from final.

“I do think that Khabib will come back,” he said. “There’s a reason why he was at the point where he was at.

“There’s a lot going on in his life, you know? You make decisions that are emotional at the time, and you sit back and you make a more relatively thoughtful decision later on, if you analyze everything. We all have a right to change our minds.”

Nurmagomedov’s one-time arch-rival, Conor McGregor, is arguably the headliner who has been most open about the way that vast wealth can change and challenge a fighter, most of whom have come from humble beginnings and worked relentlessly to reach the top of a brutal calling.

“Conor Mcgregor’s a showman, no question,” Buffer said. “There are points in [fighters’] careers where they have so much money, and that’s why it’s interesting to see Conor come back, with the hundred-plus million that he’s worth, I assume.”

Grounded in marketing and business – he says his brand with brother and fellow announcing luminary Michael is worth half a billion dollars – Buffer thinks the future for McGregor is also an active one despite his defeat to Dustin Poirier last month.

“He’s definitely one of the biggest draws, a superstar. You can still maintain your success and image in defeat.

“It’s all about how you handle yourself. The important thing would be for him to get in there in the next three-to-five months and fight again.”

With McGregor looking significantly short of the sensational form he would require to tempt Nurmagomedov to fight him again, former welterweight and middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre is the runaway favorite to provide the Dagestani’s opponent should he end his retirement, not least because of Nurmagomedov’s professed admiration for the Canadian great.

Buffer sees parallels between their potential reasons for returning. “Georges St-Pierre is another fighter that needs to be lifted,” he asserted.

“Khabib has got to be worth tens of millions of dollars by now, so you need motivation. Are they as hungry as they used to be? Probably not. Are they fighters, as they always were at heart? Yes they are.

Also on
‘This fighter motivates me so much’: Khabib says prospect of Georges St-Pierre showdown ‘excites’ him – but there’s a catch

“[It’s a case of] ‘give me the motivation so that the fighter comes out and I can do what I am supposed to do and be who I am – Khabib Nurmagomedov.’

“That’s what I think it is with Khabib, he needs that challenge. He needs to step up to a challenge to give him that eye of the tiger feeling.”

The prospect of Nurmagomedov finding that desire is uncertain for a shrewd operator who is not consumed by the rewards of fame and adulation, but there is better news for fans of another UFC icon.

Buffer expects to spend at least another ten years doing what he loves. If he targets a 30th win, Nurmagomedov will walk out to be greeted by a figure whose assuredness about his unfinished business will have been justified.

Also on
Khabib insists Conor McGregor will NEVER return to his fighting best despite Irishman’s renewed quest for UFC title

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UFC 258: Kamaru Usman beats Gilbert Burns to retain welterweight title

Undisputed welterweight champion Kamaru Usman cemented his position at the top of the 170-pound division by beating top contender Gilbert Burns at UFC 258.

Usman, 33, was stunned early by the Brazilian, his former training partner.

But the Nigerian recovered superbly to turn the tables on his heavy-handed opponent, 34, and claim a third-round TKO finish at UFC Apex in Las Vegas.

He has won all 13 of his UFC fights and surpassed Georges St-Pierre for the longest winning streak at welterweight.

Story of the fight

The action started quickly as Burns pushed the pace and rocked Usman with a big right hand that connected just behind the champion’s left ear.

Burns continued to push forward in search of a first-round finish but Usman recovered superbly and started to establish the weapon that would eventually win him the fight – his jab.

Usman continued to work behind his lead left in round two and stunned Burns with a big right hand of his own as the momentum swung back in the champion’s favour.

But, rather than looking to rush the finish, Usman calmly stalked the challenger around the octagon, switching stances and mixing kicks into his combinations before dropping Burns with a well-timed jab.

That jab proved decisive at the start of round three when Usman decked Burns with his first punch of the round then followed up with a succession of well-placed ground strikes to force referee Herb Dean to step in and wave off the contest just 34 seconds into the round.

More to follow.

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Star fails to get up after UFC boogeyman’s KO of the year

UFC boogeyman Cory Sandhagen has sent Frankie Edgar to the shadow realm with a mind-blowing knockout in their Fight Night co-main event on Sunday.

Edgar was unconscious before he even hit the ground, face-planting in ugly fashion, leaving the combat sport world with their hearts in their mouths hoping the veteran star was OK.

Sandhagen destroyed Edgar with a flying knee finish just 25 seconds into the first round.

After watching Edgar look to find a way in, Sandhagen unleashed with perfect timing, landing a devastating knee flush on Edgar’s chin.

Sandhagen did not even attempt to finish the fight on the ground after seeing Edgar freeze in mid-air briefly before collapsing to the floor.

The walk-off KO is the early front-runner to be the knockout of 2021.

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The UFC was left in awe of Sandhagen after he also pulled off another savage knockout of Marlon Moraes in October.

The finish guarantees Sandhagen will fight for the bantamweight title this year — and he called out champion Petr Yan after the fight.

However, the world’s attention immediately after the fight was on Edgar after he failed to get up from the ground for several minutes.

He was motionless in front of the ESPN commentary team before he eventually regained consciousness and was able to make the walk out to the middle of the Octagon for the official decision.

The crazy KO left legends Daniel Cormier and Dominick Cruz worried for Edgar.

“Oh my goodness. That’s how you get a title shot,” Cruz said before turning his attention to Edgar.

“It’s very scary. We’re watching Frankie Edgar too.”

Cruz said after the fight: “The world was speechless. We didn’t know what to say seeing Frankie fall like that”.

Cormier said: “Oh man that is a bad knockout. That is a scary one. Oh my goodness. That is crazy. That is one of the greatest knockouts I’ve ever seen. Two knockouts back to back like that, it’s insane.”

Sandhagen said his thoughts were also with Edgar when interviewed after the fight.

“I was excited to show off my wrestling skills because I know everyone knows I suck at that. But I’ll take that,” he said of the KO.

“It felt good, but that’s Frankie Edgar. I don’t want to watch that happen to him, but better him than me. That’s the game we’re in.”

The kick is something that will be talked about for a long time to come.

“Holy smokes! Wow he is unbelievable,” UFC journalist Ariel Helwani wrote on Twitter.

Veteran combat sport commentator Kevin Iole posted: “OMG! One of the greatest knockouts EVER. WOW! WOW! Flying knee by Sandhagen puts Edgar out. OMG”.

Aussie fighter Megan Anderson summed up the stunned reaction on Twitter when she posted simply: “Give that man a title shot!!! Cory Sandhagen is the real deal”.

In the main event, Alexander Volkov took down veteran heavyweight Alistair Overeem via a second round TKO.

Earlier, the fight world was stunned by a 26-second KO by Ode Osbourne in the first fight of the card.

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Conor McGregor next fight, Dustin Poirier rematch, Nate Diaz trilogy, lightweight division, UFC 257 result, Michael Chandler, Charles Oliveira, Khabib

The UFC lightweight division is as messy as it is stacked with stars — and Conor McGregor could be the one to benefit despite having a losing record at 155 pounds.

A combination of factors – including long-reigning champion Khabib Nurmagomedov’s pending retirement, the UFC’s decision not to make the fight between McGregor and Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 for the title and McGregor’s shattering knockout defeat last month — have combined to leave the division without an obvious way forward.

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Poirier no doubt holds the keys after adding McGregor’s scalp to a list that includes fellow contenders Dan Hooker and Justin Gaethje, but the Irishman still looms large because of the tantalising financial gain he offers any opponent. And at age 32 with a young son and 34 fights under his belt, money is obviously on Poirier’s mind.

When the UFC officially gives up on trying to coax Khabib back into the Octagon, it would likely want Poirier to fight for the title against the red-hot Charles Oliveira or division newcomer Michael Chandler.

But that plan of attack has been thrown into chaos by recent comments by Poirier.

The Louisiana native immediately shot down the idea of fighting Chandler, who impressed on debut at UFC 257 with a first-round finish of Hooker.

“Respect to Chandler, great win,” Poirier said. “But to come in and beat a guy I just beat and get a title shot, dude, I’ve been in – what is this? – 27, 28 fights in the UFC trying everything, fighting the toughest guys to get my hands on gold … That doesn’t really interest me at this point. I’ll go and sell hot sauce if that’s the case.”

Poirier believes Oliveira has a stronger case for a title shot after winning his past eight fights, including a one-sided beating of long-time contender Tony Ferguson in his last outing.

But the Brazilian faces the same problem many dangerous but relatively low-profile fighters face in securing a shot at the belt — he’s not going to line Poirier’s pockets.

Poirier is so uninspired he’s willing to step aside and give up the title shot he’s undoubtedly earned.

“I want to be the world champion … and Charles is a guy that’s paid his dues,” Poirier said. “He’s earned where he’s at, no doubt about it. Let him and Chandler fight for the belt. If they want Chandler in there for the title, and he’s calling for the title, let them fight for the belt. I’ll take a step back and just watch.”

That might be the sound of a man who is still only a week-and-a-half removed from a gruelling fight preparation and weight cut, but it also could be a signal Poirier would rather a big money trilogy fight with McGregor than a UFC title he’d be confident of picking up later.

There is one other option.

The UFC could argue Poirier and McGregor are 1-1 — and when Khabib is officially out of the way their third bout could be for the belt.

That satisfies Poirier with both the title shot and pay cheque he deserves and McGregor would no doubt be quick to sign up too.

But it would likely infuriate plenty of fighters on the roster and many fans — as ESPN’s Brett Okamoto argued.

“You know if Poirier fights McGregor again, there will likely be a UFC championship attached to it, and we both know, as amazing as McGregor’s career has been and as popular as he is, he shouldn’t be fighting for a UFC title in his next bout,” Okamoto said. “I don’t even have him ranked inside the top 10 at lightweight right now. He hasn’t won a 155-pound fight since 2016.”

But still, it appears, the division can’t move on without him.

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UFC 257 Conor McGregor knocked out by Dustin Poirier, wife’s golden reaction, Jolie Poirier, interview

Plenty of people in the fight world were happy to see Conor McGregor get knocked out on Sunday — but none more so than Dustin Poirier’s wife.

The American floored McGregor in the second round of their lightweight clash at UFC 257, doing so much damage earlier in the bout The Notorious left the arena on crutches.

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The crowd — albeit a smaller one in these COVID-19 times — went wild when Poirier’s left hand rocked McGregor but after the referee jumped in to stop the action there was one voice that stood out most.

Poirier’s wife Jolie was straight up out of her seat and headed cageside to deliver a forceful message.

“I told you! That’s the last time you’re going to doubt my husband, I swear to God,” she said as the cameras followed her.

The couple have been together since they were teenagers and an emotional Poirier paid tribute to his better half in the aftermath of the biggest win of his career, gaining revenge for his 2014 defeat to McGregor.

Asked about his wife by an interviewer who said “I’ve never seen anybody so happy, literally doing laps of the Octagon, screaming and shouting”, Poirier took a moment to reflect on what his relationship means.

“I heard her. As soon as I hit that last shot and turned away I heard my wife,” Poirier told BT Sport. “She ran straight to the cage and said, ‘I told you so!’.

“(When I was young) I didn’t have a car. She’d drive me to shows (fights), we’d use her car, she’d stay in the broken down hotels and motels with me.

“Man, I don’t want to get emotional here but that’s my girl, she’s stuck it out with me, this win is as much hers as it is mine.

“I wouldn’t be here without her, that’s for sure.”

Dustin and Jolie have a four-year-old daughter together, Parker Noelle, and she was in their thoughts after the big win as the UFC stud kissed a photo of his baby and promised he’d be home soon.

RELATED: Backstage photo exposes McGregor truth

RELATED: Conor hits back as rival twists the knife

Meanwhile, in the opposition camp, McGregor’s fiancee Dee Devlin had a simple message for her squeeze after suffering a third loss in his past six fights — and the most brutal of his career, having never been knocked out in the Octagon before.

The couple embraced after McGregor left the Octagon and Devlin took to Instagram to show her support for the Irishman.

“I love you,” she wrote over the top of the UFC star’s post thanking people for their support.

McGregor faces an uncertain future, with a blockbuster rematch against lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov now off the cards. Instead, there is talk about a trilogy fight against either Poirier or nemesis Nate Diaz, after the rivals shared the spoils across two bouts back in 2016.

Poirier dismissed suggestions he would fight Michael Chandler next after his incredible KO of Dan Hooker on debut in the co-main event at UFC 257, and instead hinted at his interest in a third and deciding fight with McGregor.

“Conor took this result very professionally, he’s a pro, nothing but respect, we’re one and one, maybe we’ll have to do this again,” he said.

Poirier also named Charles Oliveira as a possible candidate, with the Brazilian in the middle of an unbeaten eight-fight streak.

“I think he has more (of a case for a title shot),” Poirier said. “I’ve been watching that guy for 10 years in the UFC, two different weight classes. He’s fought the best of the best, over and over again. And, he’s been knocked down and gotten up, and he’s proven what MMA and perseverance is.

“I respect that. Not that I don’t respect Michael Chandler. I just think there’s more work for him to do than beat a guy I just beat.

“Khabib reiterates he doesn’t want to fight any more — dude, I’m the champ. I’m not going to fight, some — and like I said, respect to Chandler — a new guy to the UFC who just beat a guy that’s coming off a loss that I just beat for the belt. That’s not exciting to me.”

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Conor McGregor knocked out by Dustin Poirier in second round at UFC 257

Dustin Poirier has stopped Conor McGregor with a flurry of punches midway through the second round of their UFC 257 bout in Abu Dhabi, avenging his 2014 loss to the Irish superstar.

Poirier caught McGregor with a series of shots to the head, before buckling his knees with two left hands.

The American then sent McGregor to the canvas with a short right hand and finished the bout swiftly, causing stunned excitement among the few thousand screaming fans allowed to attend the bout.

“I think this is a title fight,” Poirier said of their lightweight bout.

“I’m the champion.”

In his first fight in a year, McGregor had a strong first round before he was stopped by punches for the first time in his mixed martial arts career.

McGregor, whose previous four losses all came by submission, stayed on the canvas for several moments afterward, gathering himself after his second loss in three fights since 2016.

“It’s hard to overcome inactivity over long periods of time,” said McGregor, who had not fought since beating Donald Cerrone last January.

“I just wasn’t as comfortable as I needed to be, but Dustin is some fighter. If you put in the time, you’re going to get cozy in here.

I have to dust it off and come back, and that’s what I will do … I’ll take my licks, but I’m gutted.”


McGregor and Poirier met for the first time in September 2014 as featherweights, and McGregor won by knockout in just 106 seconds during his incredible early-career success.

He became the featherweight champion 15 months later, while Poirier rebuilt his career with just one loss in his next 11 fights.

With a second chance to derail McGregor while boosting his own hopes of regaining the lightweight title, Poirier did not miss.

Sporting a shaved head and a beard, McGregor pushed the action early against Poirier, who landed an early takedown before getting backed against the cage for stretches of the first round.

In the second, Poirier bothered McGregor with leg kicks before throwing the punches that ended the bout.

“We’re 1-1, so maybe we have to do it again,” Poirier said.


In the co-main event at UFC 257, three-time Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler made a stunning UFC debut with a knockout of New Zealand’s Dan Hooker midway through the first round.

Chandler could be the next match-up for Poirier in a fight for the lightweight title apparently vacated by Khabib Nurmagomedov, who announced his retirement after his final victory last fall.


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Dustin Poirier stuns Conor McGregor with emphatic UFC 257 knockout win

‘The Diamond’ gained revenge for his brutal defeat by the same opponent in 2014, producing a barrage of heavy punches to force a surprise stoppage in round two of the eagerly-anticipated rematch on the UFC’s Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.

With nearly 2,000 socially-distanced fans watching on at the brand new Etihad Arena, Poirier wore down McGregor with some painful calf kicks and absorbed everything the powerful Irishman had to throw at him before unleashing a volley of thundering strikes.

McGregor was initially disorientated by a stunning right hook from his lightweight rival, who did not let up as he forced ‘The Notorious’ – fighting for the first time since destroying veteran Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone inside 40 seconds 12 months ago – to the mat and the referee rightly intervened with just over two-and-a-half minutes on the clock in round two.

In the co-main event, Michael Chandler’s keenly-anticipated UFC debut proved explosive as he defeated the usually-resilient Dan Hooker inside the first round of their short-lived lightweight contest.

The former three-time Bellator world champion landed a crushing left hook to the chin and then rained down blows on his helpless opponent to swiftly finish a one-sided contest before flipping off the octagon in acrobatic fashion and passionately laying down the challenge to McGregor, Poirier and Khabib.

Meanwhile, Makhmud Muradov utilised his devastating right hand to secure a third-round stoppage against Andrew Sanchez and Scotland’s Joanne Calderwood came out on top in a tremendous encounter against flyweight rival Jessica Eye.

In the opening fight on the main card, Amanda Ribas was stunned by compatriot Michelle Rodriguez, who recovered from a difficult opening round to secure a brutal second-round stoppage against her fellow Brazilian in the women’s strawweight division.

In the feature prelim bout, Armenia’s Arman Tsarukyan claimed a comfortable decision against Matt Frevola, while Brad Tavares showcased fantastic takedown defence in his win over submission specialist Antonio Carlos Junior.

Julianna Pena called out the dominant Amanda Nunes after submitting Sara McMann with a rear naked choke and a strong final round secured a morale-boosting win for Polish light-heavyweight Marcin Prachnio against the inconsistent Khalil Rountree Jr.

In the early prelims, there were wins for Movsar Evloev and Amir Albazi against Nik Lentz and Zhalgas Zhumagulov respectively.

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Conor McGregor fight TV channel and live stream: How to watch McGregor vs Poirier 2 at UFC 257

Conor McGregor has his sights set on another lightweight title shot – but must first beat Dustin Poirier for a second time.

More than six years after they first me, McGregor and Poirier will walk to the octagon again in a crossroads fight.

This time they are on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi in front of a small crowd in what will be McGregor’s first outing in over a year.

He finished Poirier inside two minutes in 2014 – and has vowed to do so again, this time within 60 seconds.

But Poirier has improved considerably since he suffered that crushing defeat and has promised to cause an upset.

Here is everything you need to know about how to watch the fight.

What TV channel is it on?

The main event between Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier will be shown on BT Sport Box Office at a cost of £19.95 but the rest of the card is split between two outlets.

For the early prelims (three fights), you can watch via the UFC’s subscription service Fight Pass. Click here to join.

Then the prelim fights will be shown on BT Sport 1 in the UK before the action switches over to Box Office for the main card.

UFC 257 can be watched on BT TV, Virgin TV, Sky, online via the web or the BT Sport Box Office App and is available to buy here.

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Can I live stream UFC 257?

The ony legal way to live stream the fights is by purchasing the fight via BT Sport Box Office and streaming it on your computer or mobile device.

In fact, UFC president Dana White has warned that anyone streaming the fight illegally will face legal action.

He said: “We’ve been one of the leagues that has been so proactive on piracy.

“I love how cool and tough these guys act on social media because – let me tell you what, we’ve caught a lot of people. Let me tell you what they do: They cry. They cry, and they beg not to be prosecuted and all this other stuff.

“We just overcame a huge hurdle in the piracy world, and we’re going to catch some of these guys in 2021, and I look forward to the crying and the begging. We’ll see how tough they are when they get caught.”

What time will the fights start?

The early prelim fights start at 11.15pm UK time before the prelim fights take place between 1am and 3am.

The main card will then start with the main event expected to kick off between 5am and 5.30am UK time.

Although the fights are in Abu Dhabi, they are being held in the morning in the Middle East to allow them to be shown at prime time in America.


Conor McGregor 4/11

Dustin Poirier 9/4

Click here to bet with bet365

*Odds subject to change


UFC 257 full card

Main Card

Dustin Poirier vs Conor McGregor

Dan Hooker vs Michael Chandler

Jessica Eye vs Joanne Calderwood

Andrew Sanchez vs Makhmud Muradov

Marina Rodriguez vs Amanda Ribas

Preliminary card

Arman Tsarukyan vs Matt Frevola

Brad Tavares vs Antonio Carlos Junior

Julianna Pena vs Sara McMann

Khalil Rountree Jr. vs Marcin Prachnio

Early preliminary card

Movsar Evloev vs Nik Lentz

Amir Albazi vs Zhalgas Zhumagulov

Conor McGregor takes on Dustin Poirier tonight
Conor McGregor takes on Dustin Poirier tonight

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Former two-weight UFC champion Conor McGregor would love to avenge his loss to the undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov but has said he will not pursue a rematch after a bad-tempered 2018 title clash that erupted into a mass brawl between the camps.

Nurmagomedov’s father died due to complications from COVID-19 last year and, following a spectacular submission win over Justin Gaethje that extended his professional record to 29 wins and no defeats, the Dagestani said he was retiring after promising his mother he would not fight again.

Irishman McGregor, speaking at a media conference at the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi where he faces American Dustin Poirier in a lightweight bout on Sunday, showed none of the brashness that made him famous as he addressed the chances of a rematch.

“It’s a tough business, he (Nurmagomedov) has things going on in his personal life. I don’t wish him any harm. It was in 2018, a lot of time has passed, the world knows this fight is not over. The sport needs it to happen, the people need it to happen, (but) I’m not going to chase it,” the 32-year-old said.

With his son and daughter in the front row with his partner, Dee Devlin, McGregor was dressed in a sharp suit as always, but his manner seems to have softened in recent years following a number of run-ins inside and outside the cage.

His only fight since losing to Nurmagomedov was a 40-second demolition of Donald Cerrone in January last year and, with the co-main event between fellow lightweights Dan Hooker and Michael Chandler, a win on Sunday could put McGregor in line for another title shot.

“I’m very excited to get in and fight. I’ve put in an immense amount of work to get my frame correct at 155 (pounds in weight). I want to answer questions here,” McGregor said. 

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