Sunday, August 14, 2022

Dustin Poirier Pinpoints Who McGregor Should Fight Next

UFC lightweight contender Dustin Poirier has given his pick for who former two-division champion Conor McGregor should face upon his return.

McGregor, who has previously held gold at both 145 and 155 pounds, hasn’t entered the Octagon since an unsuccessful 2021 inside the Octagon, which saw him knocked out for the first time, came to a close courtesy of a broken leg at UFC 264.

But having had successful surgery and a long period of recovery, the Irishman is back throwing kicks in training and looking ahead to a comeback, which reports suggest could come early next year.

A host of fighters have thrown their names into the hat to greet McGregor in the cage when he’s ready to make his comeback, from recent lightweight champion Charles Oliveira and former Bellator titleholder Michael Chandler to welterweight star Jorge Masvidal.

But three-time McGregor opponent Poirier has a different foe in mind for the “Notorious” former champ-champ.

Poirier Wants “Head-On Collision” For McGregor Return

During a recent appearance on ESPN MMA’s DC & RC show, Poirier, who has held interim gold at lightweight and currently occupies the #2 position in the division, played matchmaker for his weight class.

After backing Islam Makhachev‘s claim to the spot opposite Oliveira in the inevitable vacant title fight, as well as UFC President Dana White’s suggestion that the rising Mateusz Gamrot should meet Beneil Dariush next, “The Diamond” found a pairing for McGregor’s return.

Snubbing the hopes of his own newfound rival Chandler and former opponent “Do Bronx,” Poirier touted fellow former interim champ Justin Gaethje as the man for the job.

Justin Gaethje
Image Credit: MMA Weekly on YouTube

“Justin Gaethje versus the return of Conor McGregor,” Poirier suggested. “The hype, the build-up β€” somebody’s going to sleep. I mean, you’re tuning in for a car wreck, a head-on collision, and I wanna see it.”

Gaethje currently sits at #3 in the division having fallen short of championship glory last time out at UFC 274. After securing top contender status in a FOTY war with Chandler last November, “The Highlight” was choked out by Oliveira in May. Gaethje will no doubt look to rebound in a big way the next time he enters the Octagon.

Meanwhile, having lost back-to-back outings to Poirier last year, a pair of defeats it doesn’t seem like the Louisianan is keen on giving McGregor the chance to avenge in a fourth clash, the Dublin native will be looking to return to the win column for the first time since a 2020 victory over the now-retired Donald Cerrone when he does make the walk again.

Do you agree with Dustin Poirier? Should Justin Gaethje be the one to welcome Conor McGregor back?

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