Dustin Poirier hinted at retirement following his loss to Lightweight champion, Charles Oliveira, at UFC 269 a few weeks ago in Las Vegas, Nevada (see it again here). According to former division kingpin, Khabib Nurmagomedov, if that’s on your mind, you will likely follow through.
But, if Poirier — or any other fighter — contemplates walking away but opts to return, he or she likely won’t get back to their dominant ways. “The Eagle” explained during a recent press conference in Russia (via Fighting Flashback).
“After the fight, he said he needs to think, does he need it at all? If such thoughts came to his mind, it means he will win, but he will win and lose,” Khabib said (transcribed by Bloody Elbow). “He will not go to the end when it will be necessary. Sometimes, you look at the athlete and see how fast he changes. I say it to my close friends. While there is a time you should stay active and keep fighting. If this switch clicks once, he will never go back. I think his switch clicked.”
Nurmagomedov — who retired after beating Poirier in Oct. 2020 — looks at the future of the division and says while it’s Oliveira’s time now, it will be a revolving door of title holders in the next few years.
“The time comes. There was Frankie Edgar, Benson Henderson, Pettis, before me,” he continued. “Then Conor…. No one stayed, everyone left. Now, it is Charles Oliveira’s time. Charles came. Now, it is the time of Islam, Beneil, Justin (Gaethje), Charles Oliveira. They will fight now, then they will leave, too.
“Others will come,” he added. “No one can control this and no one will be able to stop this. Time runs (out). I think everything is simple. Charles Oliveira was better; choked and left. Later, another one will come and (beat) him. He will go out, then we will talk about another one. It is such a carousel that will never be stopped.”
A few days after his loss to “Do Bronx,” Poirier suggested that perhaps his fighting days weren't behind him after all after calling out Nate Diaz for a showdown as early as January. However, despite getting the attention of the Stockton slugger, there hasn’t been much movement on that front.
Still, it seems “Diamond” is determined to keep chugging right along. And at just 32 years of age, the former interim title holder has shown time and again that he has the chops to defeat the best UFC has to offer. Whether or not he wants to stick around long enough to make another run at the title, remains to be seen.