Michael Chandler would recommend Dustin Poirier hold out for a fourth fight against Conor McGregor, instead of challenging Charles Oliveira for the UFC Lightweight championship.
Chandler (No. 4) is coming off a competitive 155-pound title loss to Oliveira (watch highlights) at UFC 262 on May 15, 2021. Poirier likely punched his way to a title fight with a first-round technical knockout via ankle injury (watch here) against McGregor at UFC 264 on July 10, 2021. “Iron” Mike predicts that Poirier’s competitive drive will route him to Oliveira; however, he says the smart money is a third consecutive McGregor fight.
“If I’m Dustin Poirier, I’m just waiting for Conor 4,” Chandler told Helen Yee during UFC 265 fight week. “If Poirier goes and wins the title, can Conor come right back and fight Poirier if he has the title? Crazier things have happened. So if I’m Poirier, I’m just waiting out and waiting for Conor 4, especially after he said numerous things about my wife and my kids and killing me, all that kind of stuff. But I also know… and this is a testament to Poirier as a competitor, he wants to win the ultimate prize in mixed martial arts. He’s been an interim champion, but he hasn’t [been a] full-fledged 100% undisputed champion. So I think the competitor in him will go fight Charles Oliveira.”
Chandler is siding with Poirier as his official pick in a potential Oliveira vs. Poirier clash.
“I think they’re both well-rounded. I think Poirier’s got a little bit more of kind of that dog in him when the fight gets in the thick of it,” Chandler suggested. “Charles Oliveira beat me in the second round, very soon into the second round, so we didn’t really see a lot of longevity in a fight like that. We saw him go through rounds with Tony Ferguson, but that was muchly a one-sided affair. I think a fight with Dustin Poirier, he puts hands on him pretty solidly those first couple rounds and kinda starts to put it on Charles. I think Poirier wins that fight by third, fourth-round finish. If they do go all five, Poirier wins the decision.”
Chandler (22-6) is expected to fight fellow all-action athlete Justin Gaethje (22-3) at UFC 268, which will take place on Nov. 6, 2021, via ESPN+ pay-per-view (PPV).
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