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Duffy sets sights on Poirier; not McGregor


Joe Duffy sat quietly as his fellow countryman Conor McGregor went on a verbal rampage during the UFC’s “GO BIG” press conference on Sept. 4.

That’s because Duffy is the antithesis of McGregor. Whereas the “Notorious” is loud and brash, Duffy is typically mild-mannered and reserved.

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McGregor exchanged words with several fighters onstage at GO BIG, but when he turned his attention to Duffy, his jabs missed the mark.

“I don’t really care what he’s got to say,” Duffy said in an interview with on Wednesday. “A lot of people may get wound up by it, but I feel that’s a waste of energy. He can chat away and say what he wants to say, but it doesn’t change my feelings. It doesn’t change how I’d fight him if I fought him.”

Duffy, the last man to beat McGregor, might someday get another fight with the “Notorious,” but right now his focus is on Fight Night Dublin on Oct. 24 and a main event showdown with Dustin Poirier.

Both Duffy and Poirier are two of the hottest and most exciting fighters in the lightweight division. Both have finished their last two fights in the first round and Duffy said he’s eager to face “The Diamond” because he always comes to fight.

“I feel we’re both explosive fighters and have the ability to finish the fight anywhere,” Duffy said. “It’s one of them fights where you have to sit tight and don’t blink. It’s one of those fights that can end at any moment.”

Waiting for Duffy in Dublin will be an arena full of his Irish brethren, who have already shown their ability to blow the roof off on fight night. McGregor’s win over Diego Brandao in 2014 sent the 3Arena into a frenzy.

Duffy expects more of the same when he makes his walk to the Octagon against Poirier.

“When I’m back home I always get a great reception,” Duffy said. “The Irish fans get behind their fighters and it will be the same on the 24th.”

As for McGregor, Duffy said it doesn’t bother him to talk about the interim featherweight champion. He’s become used to that part of his job.

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And who knows, perhaps one day he’ll get to fight McGregor again. Maybe even in the biggest Irish MMA event in UFC history.

“To headline in Dublin is pretty special,” Duffy said. “I think the only way it could be topped would be to have the stadium show at Croke Park.”

Matt Parrino is a digital producer and writer for Follow him on Twitter at @MattParrinoUFC