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Although already listed on Sherdog Fight Finder, and confirmed several times over by Ultimate Fighting Championship President Dana White, the ink has finally dried for the big fight.
On Thursday morning, The Mac Life announced that Conor McGregor (22-4) and Dustin Poirier (26-6, 1 NC) have signed their bout agreements to face one another again at UFC 257. The two will square off on Jan. 23 at the Flash Forum on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. They will meet for the second time, and over six years removed from their first pairing at UFC 178 in 2014, where McGregor won by first-round knockout.
The official signing by both parties puts an end to negotiations that included potentially shifting the contest to headline UFC 256 on Dec. 12. While they had both verbally agreed to the matchup earlier in November, both men have signed the bout agreement to finalize the clash. This rematch initially came about in September when McGregor and Poirier attempted to fight one another for charity, until the promotion offered them an official match.
Since facing off at UFC 178, the two have both earned UFC gold. McGregor has competed eight times, where he captured the featherweight strap from Jose Aldo in 2015 and then the lightweight throne in 2016. McGregor relinquished both titles before attempting to defend them. After leaving the sport for nearly two years to box Floyd Mayweather Jr., McGregor returned to try to earn his old belt back from Khabib Nurmagomedov, only to be submitted in the fourth round with a neck crank. Since then, McGregor has competed once, knocking out Donald Cerrone in January at 170 pounds. This matchup with Poirier will take place at lightweight.
Poirier has fought 13 times since his loss to McGregor, and he also won a belt in the form of the interim lightweight crown after taking a hard-fought decision over Max Holloway in 2019. His attempt to unify it was ultimately unsuccessful when he too ran into Nurmagomedov, and he too lost by submission. “The Diamond” bounced back from the loss to Nurmagomedov by trumping Dan Hooker after a thrilling five-round battle in June. Betting lines currently see McGregor as a -220 favorite over his former foe Poirier (+180).
UFC 257 on Jan. 23 will bring the company back to “Fight Island” with a pay-per-view, and McGregor vs. Poirier will headline but will not be for any gold, per White. Other bouts slotted on the card include a pivotal women’s strawweight tilt between Michelle Waterson and Amanda Ribas, while Jessica Eye locks horns with Joanne Calderwood at women’s flyweight.