Back in September of 2014, Dustin Poirier was knocked out in the first round by Conor McGregor. The fight was over before the fighters even stepped in the cage. Poirier is a fighter that does not waste his defeats; he learns from them.
When fighters lose to McGregor, they are changed. The Diamond is no exception, except that it made him a better fighter. Poirier came back hungrier. He is a student of the game. This is not the same man that McGregor destroyed before he stepped into the octagon. McGregor baptized Poirier that night. Poirier picked himself off the canvas and reinvented himself as a warrior.
History is eleven days from being written… #UFC257[ #InAbuDhabi | @VisitAbuDhabi ] pic.twitter.com/IAm9e77XEh
— UFC (@ufc) January 12, 2021
Poirier is looking for revenge. After his fight with McGregor, Poirier made the jump to lightweight and has fought 13 times in the division. Poirier has ten wins, two losses, and one no-contest.
Poirier’s First Lightweight Run
Dustin Poirier began his lightweight journey with a pair of first-round knockouts. Poirier finished both Diego Ferreira and Yancy Medeiros in the first round of both fights. It was then that Poirier got the opportunity to do something Conor McGregor failed to; defeat “Irish Joe” Duffy. The fight was a bloody war, and Poirier took every round on his way to a unanimous decision. That win propelled Poirier back to the main card of a pay-per-view, where he would meet Bobby Green at UFC 199. Poirier impressed the world when he knocked out Bobby in the first round, earning himself KO of the night.
— CATCHWEIGHT Podcast (@catchweightpod) June 5, 2016
Poirier would then find himself in the spotlight in the main event fight. However, this wouldn’t be an example of Poirier winning, it would be another example of Poirier leaning. Michael Johnson knocked Poirier out in the first round. Poirier again elevated his game instead of letting it deter him. The loss to Johnson set up the greatest run of Poirier’s career.
Poirier’s Run to the Interm Title
Dustin Poirier followed up his loss with a victory over Jim Miller at UFC 208. It was not Poirier’s best performance but he took the win by majority decision. Next up for Poirier was a fight with Eddie Alvarez the fight was a no-contest due to illegal knees. Poirier would later get his shot at Alvarez but first, he would have to go through Anthony Pettis and Justin Gaethje.
The Diamond would finish both Pettis and Gaethje. Poirier hurt them both early on in the fight just like he did to Alvarez. Poirier learned patience from his fight with Alvarez as he rushed in early to finish Eddie but, let Alvarez back into the fight. This time was different Poirier was mature, relaxed, and patient inside the octagon. Poirier was ready for a title run.
To get his shot at the title he would have to rematch his no-contest versus Eddie Alvarez. In the rematch, Poirier finished Alvarez in the second round by TKO. Poirier had risen to the top of the lightweight division and would face off with Max Holloway for a shot at the interim belt and Khabib Nurmagomedov. Poirier destroyed Holloway and took a unanimous decision. He landed a big knee and bloodied Holloway. Dustin Poirier’s power was too much for Max Holloway and all three judges saw it as a 49-46 decision.
— Jon Realejo (@BloodyCanvasJon) July 28, 2020
Dustin Poirer would be defeated by Khabib Nurmagomedov in the third round by a rear-naked choke. Khabib dominated Poirier taking him down at will which is expected when you fight Khabib. Poirier was emotional in his post-fight interview saying “that’s just questions I will have to live with for the rest of my life” through tears. Dustin felt like he could have won that fight he believes in himself. Poirier is a brawler that felt like he was unable to use his best skill versus Khabib.
How Poirier Got Here
Poirier believes he can strike with anyone in the world. The UFC helped him put that on display when they gave him a top-ranked fighter in the lightweight division in Dan Hooker. Poirier lived up to the expectations for when you tune into a Poirier fight. The Diamond went to war. Poirer defeated Hooker in a fight that was a candidate for fight of the year. The two went blow for blow and put their toughness and power on display. Poirier proved he is one of the best strikers in the world.
— UFC (@ufc) June 28, 2020
Now Poirier will get a shot at redemption. Six years ago was a long time ago and this does not have the feel of McGregor Poirier two because Poirier is a new man. Lightweight Poirier is built differently than featherweight Poirier. This is the best version of Dustin Poirier we have ever seen. Can this Dustin Poirier pull off the upset of Conor McGregor? Can this Dustin Poirier change his legacy forever? Dustin Poirier has never felt more ready. Poirier wants to turn this into a war! He wants both men to be bloody and this to be a battle of the last man standing. This fight is for Dustin Poirier’s legacy. He knows he will not fight forever. How will Dustin Poirier be remembered?
“Life’s about evolving picking myself up getting better doing it again that’s how fighting goes when you get knocked down you keep working towards your goal that’s my story” -Dustin Poirier