Dustin Poirier has established himself as one of the top lightweights in the world. Even after losing to Khabib Nurmagomedov last year, Poirier took a high-risk fight against Dan Hooker and won that. Considering the logjam at the top, many argue that Poirier is still the best contender around. Turns out Dustin believes so as well.
Dustin said, “I think if Khabib is really retired and not coming back, I am next in line for the title shot. This could be for the undisputed belt, that makes sense. But we will see what happens. Dana said one thing, Khabib is saying another… Time will tell.”
If Khabib is really retired, Poirier wants the UFC to book him for the undisputed title against Conor McGregor. He said:
“I want the undisputed belt. In this situation, with him (Khabib) just defending, an interim belt doesn’t make a whole lot of sense… Like Dana said, hopefully, he gets some clarity and we can move the division on. You never know, me and Conor may be a title fight.’
It is hard to argue for anyone over Dustin right now. Conor will be the one opposite him if the fight is for a title, but Conor hasn’t fought at Lightweight since his loss to Khabib. The only other names that can demand a title shot are Tony Ferguson and Justin Gaethje. However, Ferguson is coming off a loss to Gaethje and will face Charles Oliveira. Gaethje is coming off a loss to Khabib and has lost to Poirier before.
Michael Chandler is yet to even have his first UFC fight, so there is no reason to rush him to the title. This really does leave Poirier as the only one with a legitimate claim, as he is the only one who won their last UFC fight at the weight class.
Whether Dana White will make this a title fight is unknown. Khabib wouldn’t want Conor to get an opportunity for the title that easily. But if Khabib is really going, he should let the division move on and allow someone like Dustin to possibly win it. After all, he has beaten both the men that will fight for the belt, anyway.
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