This past weekend at UFC 269, the undisputed lightweight title was on the line. Dustin Poirier (28-7, 1 NC) was looking to finally get his hands on undisputed gold when he took on Charles Oliveira (32-8).
For Dustin Poirier, the fight couldn’t have started better at UFC 269. The former interim champion dropped Oliveira and hurt him a couple of times in the first round. Things were going according to plan.
However, the second round saw the momentum completely shift. After a grappling exchange, Poirier found himself on the bottom. Fearful of the submission game of Oliveira, Poirier rode out the round on bottom while eating plenty of elbows.
In the third round, Oliveira charged forward and forced another grappling exchange. This time, the UFC champion was able to immediately get the back of Dustin Poirier.
Once there, the fight was essentially over. Oliveira started attacking a rear-naked choke and was able to lock one in. Poirier tried to fight it off but was forced to tap as Oliveira successfully defended his UFC lightweight title.
What’s next after UFC 269?
There are no other words to describe Poirier’s loss other than crushing. Poirier admitted at the post-fight press conference that he was heartbroken and devastated by the result.
Make no mistake about it, Dustin Poirier is one of the best fighters in the UFC. However, undisputed gold has been outside of his reach his entire career.
He got his first shot two years ago against Khabib Nurmagomedov and suffered the same result. Now, The Diamond must go back to the drawing board and figure out whats next.
The UFC does have a couple of options they can look at. An obvious choice from a rankings perspective is Michael Chandler (22-7). Chandler is on a two-fight losing streak but the losses came to Oliveira and Justin Gaethje.
A fight between Poirier and Chandler would re-establish one of them right in the title picture. If Poirier is looking for a big money fight, I love the idea of him and Nate Diaz (20-13).
These two have wanted to fight for years and now could be the perfect time. Diaz needs a fight and Poirier might want a money fight over a contender fight with Chandler.
That fight could setup a potential fourth matchup with Conor McGregor (22-6) once McGregor is ready to return over the summer. There are still plenty of big fights out there for Poirier and don’t rule him out just yet.