Whilst a showdown with Stockton fan favorite, Nate Diaz may not be next on the schedule of former interim UFC lightweight gold holder, Dustin Poirier — the Lafayette native maintains a potential future pairing with his developing rival is possible, in a move to the welterweight limit.
Poirier, who headlined UFC 264 last month — took home an opening round doctor’s stoppage TKO victory over common-opposition, Conor McGregor, who suffered a fractured tibia in his left leg at the close of the premier frame of their lightweight trilogy rubber match.
The victory followed a January stoppage win for American Top Team staple, Poirier — who managed to become the first to finish McGregor with strikes in professional mixed martial arts in the form of a second round barrage on ‘Fight Island’ at UFC 257.
Immediately following the victory at the Etihad Arena, Poirier remained both coy about an immediate trilogy bout with McGregor, as well as sharing his interest in meeting with once-scheduled foe, Diaz in a rescheduled matchup, claiming that the Californian “likes to talk a lot of sh*t online“.
While the pairing failed to come next, the two have forever been linked with an eventual showdown against each other, following the cancellation of a penned lightweight matchup back in October 2018 at UFC 230, until reports emerged that Poirier had been forced to withdraw from the tie due to an apparent hip injury.
Recently, the Louisianan refuted those reports, claiming that while he did receive injections for a hip surgery prior to a surgical procedure the following year, Diaz over-negotiated his deal with the UFC, resulting in the bout’s shelving.
“He (Nate Diaz) won’t tell the true story of how the fight fell apart,” Poirier said. “I’m the fall guy. I get some injections in my hip, and it looks like I pulled out of the fight, when the fight was already off the table at that point. … I just feel like we’ve got to fight at some point. But we’ll see.“
Speaking during a recent ESPN+ Q&A session with UFC roving reporter and analyst, Laura Sanko, Poirier claimed that a fight with Diaz is a bout he has welcomed for a long time, and that he would move to welterweight for that pairing.
“I’ve been waiting to fight Nate (Diaz) for a long time,” Poirier said. “Maybe that’s one of the fights I move up to 170 (lbs) for, you know? I think we will end up fighting at some point.“
While Poirier is in the midst of an eye-catching three-fight winning run, one-time undisputed lightweight title challenger, Diaz has lost his last two consecutive bouts — the most recent of which in a five round welterweight clash with the #3 ranked, Leon Edwards at UFC 264 back in June.