UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira says Conor McGregor deserves a standing ovation for what he’s done for the sport, and expects him to run it back with Dustin Poirier when he returns to action.
McGregor battled Poirier in their trilogy fight at UFC 264 this past weekend, where he lost by doctor’s stoppage at the end of the first round, after he broke his tibia in the dying moments of the first frame.
Although Poirier considers it as a legitimate victory, McGregor begs to differ, and believes that their rivalry is not over yet. In a video message post-surgery, ‘The Notorious’ said that his arch-rival can celebrate his ‘illegitimate’ victory all he wants, but he hasn’t done anything noteworthy.
While many fans believe it’s time for Poirier to move on, McGregor has his backers as well, including Oliveira, who thinks the two have unfinished business.
Feeling Bad For McGregor
Speaking to Super Lutas (as translated by Bloody Elbow), Oliveira said that he didn’t like the way the UFC 264 main event ended and feels bad for McGregor.
“It’s unpleasant to talk about this fight. I, Charles, see all fighters as workers who were born to do this,” Oliveira said. “I treat them all well when the fight ends. I hug them, I kiss them, I thank them for the opportunity. I watched that card from top to bottom. The way Conor lost was painful. Had he been knocked out or if he had knocked out Dustin, that would’ve been cool.”
McGregor Deserves A Standing Ovation
McGregor is expected to spend months on the sidelines recovering from his injury, but when he comes back, Oliveira, who is likely to defend his title against Poirier later this year, said that he expects the Irishman to run it back with the former interim champion.
“He (Conor) deserves a standing ovation,” Oliveira said. “I don’t like the way he sells his fights, the way he talks. As an athlete, though, he’s a giant. He influences millions of people and earns millions of dollars, win or lose. He puts money into the pockets of lots of people. Everyone wants to fight him, because they know they’ll make money. Unfortunately, losing the way he lost, he’s going to be sidelined. He said it should take about six weeks to come back. I’m sure he’s fighting Dustin again when he’s ready. He has my respect.”
What are your thoughts on Charles Oliveira’s comments on Conor McGregor?