By Jed Meshew | | 7 mins
McGregor vs Poirier UFC 264 Odds, Expert Tips & Predictions
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This Saturday, Conor McGregor returns to action when he faces Dustin Poirier in the main event of UFC 264. Any time Conor McGregor fights it’s a big deal for top sportsbooks but this weekend is arguably bigger than ever as this will be the first trilogy fight of his career.
McGregor and Poirier first fought back in 2014 with McGregor scoring a first-round KO but the two rematched earlier this year with Poirier turning the tables on the former two-division world champion by knocking McGregor out in the second round.
Now, the two will settle the score once and for all and fans of UFC betting will be watching so let’s break down the rubber match, plus some other hard-hitting action from this weekend’s card.
Conor McGregor vs. Dustin Poirier Betting Analysis & Predictions
Normally in trilogy fights, the dynamics at play are clearly well-established with both men having spent a good deal of time against one another; however, that’s not the case here. Though Poirier and McGregor have fought twice before, the first fight occurred seven years ago and both men have changed dramatically since then. That means that from an analytical perspective, the rematch that occurred in January will be far more instructive on what’s to come and, unfortunately for McGregor, Poirier defeated him soundly in that contest.
At his best, McGregor is one of the most effective offensive forces MMA has ever seen, capable of incredible feats of violence in the blink of an eye. However, at this point it’s pretty undeniable that McGregor is not at his best at lightweight. Since abandoning the 145-pound division, McGregor has gone 3-3. Though two of those wins were by KO, he has not shown the same kind of fight-altering power that was the backbone of his run to prominence, largely because he’s no longer massively advantaged in size over his competition.
McGregor’s game is built almost entirely around landing his dynamite left hand and now that he is running into fighters who can take that shot and not fold like lawn chairs, “Notorious” is struggling to find reliable fallback options.
In contrast, Poirier is one of the most versatile fighters in all of MMA. Exceedingly well-rounded and well-coached, Poirier is capable of winning this fight any number of ways. He has the technique to out-strike McGregor cleanly, the power and durability to win a straight slugfest, the stamina to outlast him over five rounds, and the grappling to take McGregor down and submit him.
Over the past five years, Poirier has fought each of those kinds of battles, against some of the best in the sport at those very things, and has continued to come out victorious. That’s a tough task for McGregor.
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UFC 264: Poirier vs. McGregor Odds To Back
In the lead up to UFC 264, a lot has been made about McGregor’s motivation and Poirier’s tactics as being the cause of his KO loss in January. But the reality is, that’s not the main culprit. McGregor is a glass cannon, the shiniest and most deadly of them all, but a glass cannon nonetheless. And when the cannonball doesn’t end the fight, everything blows up in his face.
There’s a reason McGregor doesn’t have many comeback wins on his resume and it’s because all of his eggs are in the Plan A basket. Plan A is a good basket and it helped make McGregor one of the biggest stars in the world, plus a big draw at sports betting sites and on sports betting apps. But it’s not enough when he’s consistently competing against the best, most versatile fighters in the world.
On Saturday, Poirier will be prepared to survive the early onslaught from McGregor and after that has subsided, like in January, “The Diamond” will take over, so place your bets on Poirier to win at -125 at DraftKings .
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Other Bets To Consider
Gilbert Burns vs. Stephen Thompson: The co-main event for UFC 264 features a welterweight clash between top-5 opponents that could determine the next title challenger, should Thompson get his hand raised. Unfortunately for Thompson, this is a difficult matchup for the Karate specialist.
Thompson has been an elite welterweight for nearly a decade but at 38 years old he’s getting a little long in the tooth and though much has been made of Burns’ grappling credentials, the fact is his striking is likely to give Thompson fits as well.
Burns is a solid pressure fighter with extremely fast hands and big KO power, and I expect him to find the aging veteran’s chin before 15 minutes are up. Bet Gilbert Burns by KO at +700 at DraftKings .
Parlay Action: On the prelims on Saturday there are two fights that stand out as great betting opportunities. First, in a welterweight scrap, former interim champion Carlos Condit takes on action-fighter Max Griffin in a bout that promises fireworks.
Unfortunately for Condit, his once-legendary chin is not up to the task of taking heavy artillery from a hitter like Griffin, which means Griffin at -192 at FanDuel is a good line. Similarly, Jennifer Maia is just an all-around superior fighter to Jessica Eye and right now you can get Maia at -215 at FanDuel . Parlay the two of those together for a great value play.
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UFC 264 Date, Time & TV Info
When is UFC 264?
UFC 264 is July 10 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
What Time is UFC 264?
The main card is scheduled to begin at 10 p.m. ET; early prelims start at 6:15 p.m. E.T. and prelims begin at 8 p.m. E.T.
Where Can I Watch UFC 264?
The UFC 264 main card is on ESPN+ PPV; prelims are on ESPN, ESPN+, and UFC Fight Pass.