If you’ll forgive the rather obvious cliche, Conor McGregor was at a crossroads ahead of UFC 264.
A win over rival Dustin Poirier in their rubber match would almost certainly assure a shot at lightweight champion Charles Oliveira — as unlikely a title holder as the UFC has produced in recent years. A loss? Well, another money fight with Nate Diaz was still out there, but would that satisfy the needs of “The Notorious” — who seems to prefer the bite off the biggest challenges available?
Dustin Poirier’s path back to gold was a little less fraught with peril, if only by virtue of being the more active fighter in recent years. A loss could produce a fight against any of Justin Gaethje (an interesting rematch given Gaethje’s own development in recent times), Michael Chandler, or any number of other talents in the deep 155lb division.
But there was no question that a shot at gold was waiting in the wings for the winner of UFC 264’s main event. The only question, in fact, was whether McGregor would be able to make the necessary adjustments from their second meeting earlier this year.
Ahead of the event, the UFC’s crown jewel of summer, the key players sat down for the UFC 264 pre-fight press conference. Catch the live stream above starting at 8PM ET on Thursday, July 8.