Conor McGregor returns to the octagon next Sunday with his must-see trilogy clash with Dustin Poirier, the headline bout at a sold-out UFC 264 in Las Vegas. Here’s the details.
What is it?
The latest pay-per-view event from the world’s lead mixed martial arts organisation. UFC 264 is topped by McGregor’s third fight with Poirier and comes less than six months after the American levelled the series at 1-1 via an emphatic TKO at UFC 257 in Abu Dhabi.
When is it?
Sunday July 11 (July 10 in United States). The early prelims kick off at 2:15am UAE time, the prelims at 4am, and main card at 6am.
Where is it?
T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas. The events marks the first time the UFC have put on a sold-out show in Las Vegas since before the pandemic.
Undoubtedly, the blockbuster attraction is McGregor-Poirier 3. The pair first met in 2014, at featherweight at UFC 178, when McGregor ended a heated build-up by knocking out Poirier in the first round. However, some seven years later, at lightweight, the American exacted revenge, triumphing in the second round at Etihad Arena – the curtain closer to Fight Island 3 in the capital. The loss represented the first knockout defeat of McGregor’s 27-fight professional mixed martial arts career.
If the pre-fight back in January was congenial, the Irishman vowed in the aftermath that there would be “no more Mr Nice Guy”. That has certainly rang true the past week: the pair have been busy exchanging barbs on social media. Poirier sits currently as the lightweight division’s No 1-ranked challenger (McGregor is No 5), with the winner expected to next take on champion Charles Oliveira for the belt.
Elsewhere on the card, former welterweight title challenger Gilbert Burns returns for the first time following his championship defeat to Kamaru Usman in February. The Brazilian, the division’s No 2-ranked contender, takes on 4th-ranked Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson in the prelude to McGregor-Poirier.
Meanwhile, Mexico’s Irene Aldana looks to bounce back from her defeat last October to Holly Holm in Abu Dhabi when she faces fellow bantamweight Yana Kunitskaya, while fan favourite Sean O’Malley will hope to edge closer to bantamweight title contention with a match-up against newcomer Kris Moutinho. The UFC debutant is a late stand-in for the injured Louis Smolka.
Full Card *subject to change
Dustin Poirier v Conor McGregor (lightweight)
Gilbert Burns v Stephen Thompson (welterweight)
Tai Tuivasa v Greg Hardy (heavyweight)
Irene Aldana v Yana Kunitskaya (women’s bantamweight)
Sean O’Malley v Kris Moutinho (bantamweight)
Carlos Condit v Max Griffin (welterweight)
Niko Price v Michel Pereira (welterweight)
Ryan Hall v Ilia Topuria (featherweight)
Trevin Giles v Dricus Du Plessis (middleweight)
Jennifer Maia v Jessica Eye (women’s flyweight)
Omari Akhmedov v Brad Tavares (middleweight)
Zhalgas Zhumagulov v Jerome Rivera (flyweight)
Hu Yaozong v Alen Amedovski (middleweight)
How to watch in UAE
Fight fans can watch all the action through the UFC Arabia app.