Manny Pacquaio heaped praise on Dustin Poirier for causing a seismic upset by knocking out Conor McGregor at UFC 257 on Fight Island.
However, McGregor’s hopes of luring Khabib Nurmagomedov into a rematch are seemingly also in tatters after Dana White admitted ‘it doesn’t sound very positive’.
McGregor had beaten Poirier inside two minutes in September 2014 and was the overwhelming favourite to do the double in the lightweight bout in a bid to get old foe Nurmagomedov to reverse his retirement.
But Poirier survived some cagey moments in the first round and began to gain the ascendancy with some savage leg kicks in the second before a flurry of punches sent McGregor down to the canvas.
Poirier followed up with a couple of vicious blows on a defenceless McGregor, leading referee Herb Dean to wave off the fight after just two minutes and 32 seconds of the second round.
Pacqauio tweeted almost instantly: “Beautiful thing about the fight game, anything can happen! Congrats to Dustin Poirier, huge win!”
The boxing legend was hoping to face McGregor in the ring this year but, after being knocked out for the first time in his MMA career, it seems unlikely he will face an eight-weight boxing champion.
McGregor then told talkSPORT after his loss, that the Pacquiao fight was on, but he’s not sure now.
The plan is to ‘regroup’ first before making any decision on his next move.
White had hoped to make the rematch with Khabib, but revealed his conversation with the lightweight champion makes that seem unlikely.
Speaking at the post-fight press conference, White said: “I just spoke to Khabib. He said ‘Dana be honest with yourself, I’m so many levels above these guys.’
“It doesn’t sound very positive.”