Dustin Poirier (27-6, 1 NC) is still riding high after his massive victory at UFC 257. It’s been just over a week, but the fight world is still buzzing about Poirier’s performance and his knockout over former two-division UFC champion, Conor McGregor (22-5).
Poirier’s run in the lightweight division is something truly special. He’s defeated the likes of McGregor, Justin Gaethje, Eddie Alvarez, Max Holloway, Dan Hooker, and Anthony Pettis. Since 2016, only Khabib Nurmagomedov (29-0) has been able to defeat Poirier.
After Poirier won at UFC 257, he made it clear that he believes he’s the uncrowned champion if Khabib is retired. When asked what he wanted next, Poirier said there were only three fighters who he was interested in at the moment.
In the post-fight press conference, Poirier listed off McGregor, Nate Diaz (20-12), and Charles Oliveira (30-8, 1 NC). Dana White said that the UFC wanted to put Poirier against Michael Chandler (22-5), however, Poirier hasn’t seem interested.
In a new interview with MMA Junkie, Poirier reiterated the fact that he’s only interested in certain opponents. Poirier went on to say in this recent interview that the UFC can put on another title fight and he’d remove himself if he’s only offered fights that don’t make sense to him.
What will the UFC do?
“I want to be the world champion, and Charles is a guy that’s paid his dues,” Poirier said to MMA Junkie. “Let him and Chandler fight for the belt. If they want Chandler in there for the title, and he’s calling for the title. Let them fight for the belt. I’ll take a step back and just watch.”
The UFC is now put in a very interesting position. Really, out of anybody inside the top five or six in the lightweight division, a fight with Charles Oliveira would sell the least in terms of PPVs.
Yes, Oliveira is on this incredible run where he’s won eight straight. However, he still doesn’t have massive buying appeal. In those eight wins, the only main wins of significance were Kevin Lee and Tony Ferguson, who was dominated by Justin Gaethje earlier in 2020.
Michael Chandler is a much bigger opponent in terms of business for the UFC. The same can be said for McGregor and Nate Diaz. Based on Poirier’s current position, I personally believe that the trilogy with McGregor is likely going to come next.
As of right now, I just can’t see the promotion making the fight between him and Oliveira. I think Oliveira needs to get one more signature win to build up the awareness around him a bit more. Oliveira is like the Leon Edwards of the lightweight division. Resume is great, but drawing power is not.