Dustin Poirier Finally Garnering Long Overdue Respect in Division
Poirier enters rematch with Eddie Alverez with gold on his mind
May 13th UFC 211, Dustin Poirier out-struck Eddie Alvarez, doubling his total of significant strikes. The fight was going Poirier’s way against former champion and the always dangerous “Underground King.” An illegal knee by Alvarez in Rd 2 ended that fight, it was declared a “No Contest” and the outcome for this night continued the UFC’s constant overlook of Dustin Poirier. “The Diamond” not only did not get a win but while Eddie Alvarez went on to coach TUF, and was continuously promoted in his fight Vs. big name Justin Gaethje, Poirier was again placed off to the side.
Poirier instead would face a lower ranked opponent, and at the time (yes I know how good he has looked in his last two showings) was a fighter trying to reignite his flame in Anthony Pettis. Still, the Louisiana native made the most of it, finishing “Showtime” Pettis in a bloodbath and gaining FOTN honors. Dustin Poirier has only lost twice since 2014, once to Conor McGregor (Featherweight contest) and only once since moving up in weight, in 2016 to Michael Johnson. Since his loss in 2014 to McGregor, he has fought 9 times and gained 3 FOTN honors and 2 POTN bonuses. Poirier puts on a show every time he enters the octagon, his striking is world class, 12 KO wins, his submission game has shown us how much of a complete fighter he is, 6 submission wins, we have even seen him go the distance on 5 of his wins showing off his cardio and heart.
Still, Poirier had more to prove in the UFC’s book, fresh off a loss to Eddie Alvarez, the man Poirier was out-fighting in their no contest, Justin Gaethje would be his next opponent. Gaethje is a brawler, he is either knocking you out or being knocked out, that is just plain and simple his game-plan. This is a dangerous fight, two men with power going at it, Poirier knew this was a big chance to finally garner respect in the division. In an absolute war, Poirier defeated Gaethje via KO in round 4. Poirier landed 174 significant strikes, and in round 4 wore down Gaethje, caught him and secured another FOTN win, the UFC could ignore this man no more.
At UFC 223, a week before the win over Gaethje, Khabib Nurmagomedov became the Lightweight Champion of the world, after a week of disappointment with Ferguson injured, the McGregor fiasco, and finding a last-minute replacement, Khabib was champion. Poirier took advantage of this and stated: “I never ask for anything I don’t deserve, Khabib lets do this.” The UFC can look away no more, Dustin Poirier is a legitimate #1 contender in this division. With Ferguson out for an undisclosed amount of time, McGregor living his millionaire life, and Khabib ready to defend, Poirier and Alvarez are the next two in line in this stacked division. So here we are, in July 2018, a year since UFC 211, the same fight, except this time the main event, not a Prelim fight. The UFC got it right, these two need to bury the old blood, they have been on two very different paths since that 2017 NC but seemingly meet again. Khabib has made it known he wants either McGregor, GSP, or “The Diamond” next, as seen by this tweet from his manager.
Dustin Poirier has unfinished business with “The Underground King”, a win can prove to anyone, he is next in line for that title shot. “The Diamond” is ready to shine. Never asking for something he doesn’t deserve, the 23-5-1NC fighter looks to put on another show, with another dangerous opponent, to give the fans what they want, a war. Poirier, at only 29 is one of the most dangerous fighters in the division, and finally, the UFC is realizing his potential as a top draw in the organization. A win should solidify him a chance at Khabib Nurmagomedov, catch his rematch with Eddie Alvarez on July 28th on Fox in Calgary.
Author: Joe McDonagh (Joe_mcdonagh6)