Nate Diaz was among the many tens of millions who watched Dustin Poirier batter Conor McGregor at UFC 257 this previous weekend and now the fan favorite from Stockton, Calif., has his sights set on the brawler from Lafayette, La.
Poirier stated a struggle in opposition to Diaz pursuits him and mutual curiosity was confirmed when Diaz responded to Poirier on social media. With champion Khabib Nurmagomedov lately retired, the UFC’s light-weight division is extensive open in 2021 and this could be a great time a recent matchup brimming with blockbuster pay-per-view potential.
The pair had been briefly slated to fulfill at UFC 230 in late 2018 however Poirier sustained an harm in coaching, withdrew from the occasion and the struggle was by no means rebooked.
“All the time wished to whip Nate Diaz’s ass,” Poirier instructed reporters on the post-fight press convention in Abu Dhabi. “That pursuits me. … Nate Diaz bought away and likes to speak loads of (expletive) on-line. I simply gotta return dwelling and we’ll see.”
Diaz hasn’t competed within the light-weight division in additional than 5 years however has been reportedly getting ready for a return to 155 kilos.
I’m coaching to whoop ur ass subsequent.
Be about it don’t speak about it pic.twitter.com/M7FKHvIbFu
— Nathan Diaz (@NateDiaz209) January 24, 2021
UFC president Dana White advised Poirier would possibly tackle Michael Chandler subsequent – probably with a light-weight title on the road – after Chandler made good on his promise to ship a memorable UFC debut. The previous Bellator MMA champion completed Dan Hooker with strikes half a spherical into Saturday’s co-main occasion to insert himself into the title dialog.
Poirier instantly threw chilly water on a attainable matchup with Chandler, nevertheless, saying it doesn’t make sense in his thoughts – particularly if the belt was on the road.
“Respect to Chandler. Nice win over a man. However to return in and beat a man I simply beat and get a title shot?” Poirier questioned. “Dude, I’ve been in, what is that this, 27, 28 fights within the UFC? Making an attempt all the things, combating the hardest of the hardest guys to get my fingers on gold. … That doesn’t actually curiosity me at this level. I’ll go and promote scorching sauce if that’s the case.”
Poirier added, “I can assure I gained’t be combating Michael Chandler,” and advised Chandler be matched with Charles Oliveira or a distinct contender moderately than soar the road so to talk.
Ranked light-weight contenders coming off wins: Dustin Poirier, Michael Chandler, Charles Oliveira, Rafael Dos Anjos
Ranked light-weight contenders coming off losses: Justin Gaethje, Conor McGregor, Tony Ferguson, Dan Hooker, Paul Felder
2021 going to be a hell of a trip on this division. Nice evening of fights. Comfortable for @DustinPoirier
— Justin Gaethje (@Justin_Gaethje) January 24, 2021
Poirier, 32, stated he’s additionally involved in a trilogy bout with McGregor since every man has one knockout win and one knockout loss in that rivalry, however is an instantaneous rematch after such a one-sided stoppage the most suitable choice when there are such a lot of others on the market?
Diaz, 35, shot to superstardom in 2016 due to his rivalry with McGregor. He grew to become the primary fighter to defeat McGregor within the UFC however McGregor gained a detailed resolution of their rematch, so there’s additionally the choice of a Diaz-McGregor trilogy bout.
Poirier is the consensus high light-weight in MMA now that Nurmagomedov is out of the image. If the UFC is eager on crowning a brand new champion as quickly as attainable then Poirier must be booked in that struggle. It’s solely proper.
However right here’s a query: Why does the UFC want to crown a brand new light-weight champ ASAP? Nurmagomedov solely hung up his gloves three months in the past. Three. Months. Why not give the division slightly extra time to breath and realign?
Would Diaz’s inactivity coupled along with his current 2-2 stretch at welterweight dissuade the UFC from reserving him in a light-weight title struggle in opposition to Poirier? At this level, does it even matter?
The fantastic thing about Poirier vs. Diaz is it’s one of many solely non-title fights not involving McGregor the UFC might e book that may do monster numbers. They’re two of the game’s high stars, there’s some private warmth, they do have a connection to McGregor which naturally helps promote the struggle additional, to not point out stylistically it could be absolute fireworks.
It is recent. It is enjoyable. Poirier needs it. Diaz needs it. There’s no higher time to do it than the current.