Dustin Poirier is now the UFC interim lightweight champion. He won this title with a riveting decision defeat of reigning UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway in the UFC 236 main event.
Even with this new piece of hardware wrapped around his waist, however, their was still some question as to whether Dustin Poirier would get the next crack at undisputed lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov. This doubt was due primarily to the presence of Conor McGregor and Tony Ferguson in the division, either of whom could seemingly jump to the front of the lightweight contendership line.
Speaking at the UFC 236 post-fight press conference, UFC President Dana White confirmed that the next shot at Khabib Nurmagomedov will indeed go to Dustin Poirier.
“Yes, that’s the fight,” White said (via MMA Fighting). “Poirier will fight Khabib next. Probably in September.
White went on to commend Dustin Poirier for enduring an uncharacteristically long slog to a UFC title shot.
“Some guys have the Israel Adesanya path and the Conor McGregor path and some have the Poirier path,” White said. “If you look, I don’t remember what the numbers were, but Chuck Liddell had to go through that same thing and then Tito (Ortiz) wouldn’t fight him and there’s been a lot of guys — Tony Ferguson, look at the bad luck that guy’s had. And the list goes on and on, some people it works out for and some people have longer roads.
“Poirier has stayed the path and trained hard and done what he’s had to do to to get here and tonight was his night. He fought an incredible fighter and he won.
“Unless something happens to Dustin Poirier, he gets hurt or gets injured or something happens, he’s got the fight.”
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 4/15/2019.