Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight kingpin Charles Oliveira will make his first division title defense when he collides with former interim champion Dustin Poirier atop the UFC 269 pay-per-view (PPV) event this Sat. night (Dec. 11, 2021) inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Oliveira’s head coach, Diego Lima, believes “The Diamond” is “very afraid” of the Brazilian’s ground game and will try to keep the fight standing as long as possible. Probably because “Do Bronx” holds the record for most submission victories in UFC history.
“We have someone who’s very afraid of Charles’ ground,” Lima told MMA Fighting’s Portuguese-language podcast Trocação Franca. “In my opinion, Poirier doesn’t really want to take this fight to the ground. People that watch Charles’ fights and Poirier’s fights will say, ‘Fuck, Poirier better keep this fight on the feet.’”
Oliveira (31-8, 1 NC) has captured nine straight with eight finishes, boasting knockout power in his fists and submission skills on the ground. But Poirier 28-6 (1 NC) has only been submitted twice in his illustrious career and just once since 2012, a rear-naked choke opposite Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 242.
“Oliveira is so ready on the feet and on the ground that I’ve dreamed of both,” Lima continued. “I’ve dreamed of him landing a hard one and Poirier getting soft and going down and Charles finishing the job with some ground-and-pound until the referee pushes him away; I’ve also dreamed of Charles adjusting a tight position and Poirier getting purple, red, yellow, and then tapping. Honestly, I’ve dreamed of both things because I know Charles has what it takes to do both things. That’s the reality. One thing is for sure, this fight won’t go to the judges.”
We’ll find out on Sat. night in “Sin City.”