After coming up short against UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov in September, Dustin Poirier is now targeting a return to the cage in April.
When he makes that return, he’s hoping for a big-name opponent, such as Conor McGregor or Nate Diaz.
“When they offer me a name that gets me excited then that will be the right one,” Poirier told MMA Fighting. “A Conor [McGregor], a Nate Diaz, a Khabib [Nurmagomedov], a Tony [Ferguson], those kinds of guys get me excited.
“I just want fights like that. Fights that get me excited. Fights that are going to be exciting.”
This is not the first time Poirier has called for a rematch with McGregor, who he lost to at featherweight years ago. In fact, Poirier has called for this matchup several times since his loss to Nurmagomedov.
McGregor, of course, has been linked to a fight with Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone for his anticipated comeback fight. Poirier sees the appeal of this matchup, but doesn’t think it makes much sense from a competitive vantage point.
“I respect “Cowboy” and everything he’s done but I do think he’s on the back end of his career,” Poirier said. “It’s “Cowboy,” he can show up and submit or knock out Conor as well. I’m not counting the guy completely out but I do think that is a more favorable fight for him on his return.
“Fight a guy who’s been KO’d or TKO’d twice in his past two fights. I’m not a matchmaker. I think me and [Conor] makes more sense.”
Dustin Poirier added that he believes he’s the kind of opponent McGregor should be seeking if he wants to get back to the top of the lightweight division.
“I think it would make more sense if he’s trying to get back to the top,” Poirier said. “I was the former interim world champion. Conor’s the former undisputed world champion. We fought years ago, we both had our separate paths and we’ve both done great things. I think this makes a lot of sense. I’m No. 2, I think he’s No. 3. It makes a lot of sense.
“I think the fans want to see it as well but time will tell. I definitely want that fight, and it’s something I want to do.”
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This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 11/27/2019.