Former interim lightweight champion Dustin Poirier has expressed interest in moving up to welterweight on multiple occasions. On that issue, rising contender Islam Makhachev shared his thoughts.
The Dagestan native seems skeptical about Poirier’s intentions considering that Poirier knows he will not be in a title fight anytime soon.
“I think he just wanna make money. He knows he’s not gonna be champion no more. That’s why he’s thinking about money now. He just wanna choose weight in where he can make more money. This is my opinion.”
Dustin Poirier won the interim UFC lightweight belt after beating the former featherweight champion Max Holloway in a Fight of the Night main event at UFC 236.
After that, he went on to challenge for the undisputed lightweight strap twice, but fell short each time against then-champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and current champion Charles Oliveira, both by way of third-round submission. It’s interesting to consider if Poirier is chasing money considering he’s had not one but two major big money bouts against Conor McGregor.
UFC veteran has since hinted at a move to the welterweight division in social media, but still no official news or announcement in sight.
Even without any official statement, some potential names were floated as potential opponents to fight Poirier in the 170 lbs division. The former interim welterweight champion Colby Covington and the crowd-favorite Nate Diaz are some of the names in the mix. Diaz could certainly work out considering the back and forths the two have had on social media.
While Poirier seems to target the money-drawing fights, Makhachev is on his trail to challenge for the lightweight belt.
Currently bulldozing through the 155 lbs division and riding an impressive 9-fights win streak, he will headline the UFC Fight Night 202 main event against the No.3 lightweight Beneil Dariush that also on a 7-fights win streak on February 26.
The fight seemed to be an unofficial title eliminator and the winner will presumably be granted the ticket to challenge the winner of Charles Oliveira vs Justin Gaethje next April.