Conor McGregor left UFC 264 on a stretcher, Dustin Poirier on a run towards gold and Mt Druitt slugger Tai Tuivasa … well, he went out drinking beer from the shoes of strangers.
On a crazy night in Las Vegas, Irish megastar McGregor was stopped in just a round – yet still spitting verbal obscenities — after suffering a broken leg in his hyped headliner trilogy bout against Poirier
So is the king dead?
It’s hard to say.
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Certainly combat sport’s biggest name is set for an extended stint on the sidelines while Poirier has undoubtedly booked himself a shot at UFC lightweight champ Charles Oliveira.
Exactly when McGregor injured his leg, which was splinted inside the Octagon, and will see him undergo surgery within 24 hours, is up for debate.
But what isn’t in doubt is that Poirier not only won the first round, but remains hugely pissed with the Irishman – or “dirtbag” — who was still threatening to kill the American and sledging his wife as he lay in the Octagon afterwards.
Conor McGregor carried out of the arena on a stretcher at UFC 264. Picture: Stacy Revere/GettySource:AFP
“I was boxing the bleeding head of him,” McGregor fired. “Kicking the legs off him. This is not over.”
Then, this to Poirier and his wife Jolie: “Your wife is in my DMs. Hey baby, hit me back and we will chat later on. You little ho.”
Which was rough, sure.
But when it came to real savagery, the night belonged to that Tuivasa left hook which dropped former NFL bad boy Greg Hardy and ignited a crowd including the likes of Donald Trump, Justin Beiber and Megan Fox.
Already on a run of two first round KOs, the Aussie scored one of the great UFC knockouts finishing Hardy in 67 seconds.
Better, the Mt Druitt slugger then climbed atop the Octagon and skolled a beer.
From a shoe.
All of which had been handed to him by some stranger in the crowd.
The official gets between Greg Hardy and Tai Tuivasa in the first round in their heavyweight bout during UFC 264. Picture: Stacy Revere/GettySource:Getty Images
Same deal later in the night, when UFC president Dana White revealed the former Sydney Roosters prop had been awarded a US$75,000 bonus.
Which when said in an Australian accent, equates to tick over $100,000.
Which was cash quickly earned on a fight where Hardy had opened proceedings by pointing to the centre of the Octagon, as if to tell Tuivasa he wanted to go nowhere else — and throw down.
Although it should be noted the finish came only moments after the American actually wobbled Tuivasa.
Bruv, Tai Tuivasa did a shoey with Dustin Poirier's hot sauce in the mix! 😱 pic.twitter.com/xAwaHzbcmY
However, as he swarmed in to finish things, the Aussie recovered quickly and — bang — threw that devastating left hook which dropped the former Carolina Panther.
“Western Sydney baby,” shouted Tuivasa, who walked out to a Spice Girls song and with the Aboriginal flag draped over his shoulders.
“He wanted to bang with me. I’m not the right guy to bang with.
“He should’ve picked another bloke.”
Afterwards, Tuivasa danced his way out of the arena as, one after another, fans handed him shoes filled with beer.
Dustin Poirier lands on Conor McGregor in the first round at UFC 264. Picture: Stacy Revere/Getty/AFPSource:AFP
UFC: Dana White has confirmed there will be a fourth fight between bitter rivals Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier after the Irish star heals from his injury….
UFC: Dana White has confirmed there will be a fourth fight between bitter rivals Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier after the Irish star heals from his injury.
Which, one after another, he skolled.
Indeed, just before disappearing backstage, Tuivasa downed a beer from someone poured down on him from the bleachers above the fighter tunnel.
In his professional career, Tuivasa has now scored 11 of 12 professional wins via first round KO.
So what chance UFC boss White would do a shoey with him?
“If the world was on fire,” he laughed, “and everyone was dying of thirst, that would (still) be the last f … ing thing I would do”.
UFC: Tai Tuivasa put Greg Hardy to sleep in the first round and celebrated the only way he knows how….
UFC: Tai Tuivasa put Greg Hardy to sleep in the first round and celebrated the only way he knows how.
Aussie UFC star lines up the ultimate shoey
Conor McGregor owns a pair of Gucci sneakers valued at $900.
That, and some crocodile skin loafers worth more again.
Which for Mt Druitt slugger Tai Tuivasa, all represents as good a place as any to start.
Tai Tuivasa is looking to take down former NFL player Greg Hardy.Source:Getty Images
“Although if I ever do drink a beer from McGregor’s shoe, I probably won’t give it back,” he says.
Famed for the wonderful mix that is both Australia’s heaviest hands and celebrating UFC wins with a shoey, Tuivasa is now looking to secure the biggest win of his cult career at UFC 264 in Las Vegas on Sunday.
Apart from appearing just two bouts before the McGregor headliner, Tuivasa is also set to throw down with polarising American Greg Hardy, who rose to fame as a defensive end with Carolina Panthers and Dallas Cowboys.
“So this will be the most eyeballs ever on one of my fights,” he says.
Even better again though, are the shoey options.
According to reports, VIP guests set to cageside for the McGregor blockbuster include not only Donald Trump, Justin Bieber and Megan Fox, but Mel Gibson, Kevin Durant, Odell Beckham Jr., Machine Gun Kelly, Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker.
So what chance with a win, Tuivasa will be going after one of their shoes? Or perhaps later that night at an after party, a Gucci kick of the Notorious?
“Ah, let’s see who wants to have a crack,” the Sydneysider laughed this week from his Las Vegas hotel room.
Tai Tuivasa took out Harry Hunsucker in March.Source:Getty Images
“I’ve heard there are going to be a few big names here this weekend, so let’s see who wants to be involved. I’ve already tried a couple of times for (UFC commentator) Joe Rogan’s shoe.
“Haven’t got it yet, but I’m going to keep trying.”
Asked how it felt to be fighting again before a packed T Mobile Arena, Tuivasa continued: “Man, I’m pumped.
“It’s been two or three fights since I’ve heard a crowd, so I want to get those shivers back.
“And once I win this, I’m back on a roll.
“Three in a row.
“So I want to then go for someone in the top 15.”
While Tuivasa is coming off consecutive first round knockouts, there is no doubting he faces a test from Hardy, who has already demanded publicly the pair stand and trade.
Conor McGregor is back in action this weekend.Source:Getty Images
“And I’m happy to keep my end of that deal,” Tuivasa said.
So as for what he makes of his hyped US rival?
“Look, he’s a big human,” the 28-year-old conceded. “And there’s no doubting he has done well.
“To be involved in both the NFL and UFC, they’re two of the world’s hardest sports.
“I can’t take any credit away from that.
UFC: Dustin Poirier did not take kindly to Conor McGregor throwing his hot sauce into the crowd, and things escalated soon after when Conor threw a kick in the face-off….
UFC: Dustin Poirier did not take kindly to Conor McGregor throwing his hot sauce into the crowd, and things escalated soon after when Conor threw a kick in the face-off.
“Still, this is fighting.
“And while he has size, has athleticism, I don’t think there is much he can beat me at inside a cage.
“He has said he wants to fight the division’s toughest guys and I think Sunday will be a good test for him.”
Certainly Hardy knows what is coming at UFC 264.
Greg Hardy (left) has impressed since coming over to the UFC.Source:Getty Images
Speaking earlier this week, the tattooed American labelled Tuivasa a “savage” who boasted genuine knockout power.
“I’ve watched his film and he’s been in good form,” he said. “That’s a big part of why I called him out.
“There is something alluring about his knockout power.
“It actually gives me a shock to my body when I see that. Knowing that he could take me down.
“(Laughs) And of course I don’t mean take me down as in wrestling.
“I mean take my head off.
“That’s what popped out at me. What made me say ‘OK, that’s my guy’.”.
Originally published asUFC drama: Broken McGregor, Aussie’s $100K win bonus
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