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McGregor outsider ahead of UFC return

The market isn’t favouring Conor McGregor to reclaim the lightweight gold.

IT is already being touted as the biggest fight in MMA history, but the market has installed former lightweight champion Conor McGregor as the outsider heading into his return to the octagon.

The Irish superstar heads into his October 6 bout against undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov as a $2.45 outsider at Sportsbet to reclaim the belt he was stripped of in 2017.

The Dagestan destroyer Nurmagomedov is the short-priced favourite to defend his lightweight crown at the $1.55 quote.

Former middleweight champion George St-Pierre, arguably the sport’s greatest fighter of all-time, believes the undefeated Nurmagomedov holds all the aces ahead of their UFC 229 showdown.

“I believe Khabib has more chance to win that fight than Conor,” St-Pierre said at a press conference in Sydney to promote the Australian leg of his speaking tour.

“Conor has one way to win the fight — if he catches him on the way in, standing up.

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“Khabib has more chances to win. He can win by submission on the ground and he can win by ground and pound. If it goes to a decision the chances are very likely Khabib is going to win.

“I see more ways to win from Khabib than I see from Conor.”

Nurmagomedev is $4.50 to defeat McGregor via KO.

A former opponent of McGregor Dustin Poirier agreed with GSP’s assessment of the fight, but said that the Notorious one has a number of strengths heading into the high profile bout.

“He’s got great timing, great judge of distance,” Poirier said of McGregor.

“We’ll just see if the takedown defense holds up and the cardio holds up. That’s all he has to do.”

McGregor is at $2.70 to win via KO to reclaim the 155lbs belt.

Poirier said McGregor will have plenty of opportunities to ice his opponent early.

“The openings will be there, but he just has to stand the test of the wrestling and the conditioning, the physical part that Khabib’s going to put on early in the fight.”

McGregor vs Nurmagomedov headlines UFC 229 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, October 6.