A highly-anticipated lightweight matchup between former interim titleholders, Tony ‘El Cucuy’ Ferguson, and Dustin ‘The Diamond’ Poirier will not take place at UFC 254 on October 24th. – as co-headliner to Khabib ‘The Eagle’ Nurmagomedov and Justin ‘The Highlight’ Gaethje.
Poirier, who informed ESPN MMA reporter, Ariel Helwani of the shelved targeted matchup, explained how himself and the promotion failed to come to terms on a deal which would see him tackle division mainstay, Ferguson, in their second Octagon appearances of this annum. “UFC and I did not come to terms. I will not be fighting on October 24th.“
Poirier returned from hip surgery and a title unification loss to Khabib last September – this year to take a unanimous judging win over Dan ‘The Hangman’ Hooker at UFC Fight Night Vegas in June, in an instant lightweight classic.
Ferguson on the other hand, last featured opposite the above mentioned, Gaethje at UFC 249 on short-notice in Jacksonville in May. Ferguson dropped his remarkable, division tying twelve-fight win streak to the Trevor Wittmann student, in a largely one-sided fifth-round knockout loss.
Poirier scored his interim crown with his second career victory over former featherweight best, Max ‘Blessed’ Holloway at UFC 236 in April of last year – in a unanimous decision win. For Ferguson, the 10th. Planet Jiu-Jitsu black belt picked up interim spoils against the then surging, Kevin ‘The Mo’Town Phenom’ Lee at UFC 216 in October 2017 – slapping on a third-round triangle.
Poirier who had recently begun training in preparation for a possible tie with Ferguson at American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Florida, will subsequently return home to Lafayette, Louisiana – with the pairing failing to come to fruition.