Islam Makhachev Doesn’t Want To See Dustin Poirier Retire After A Defeat At UFC 302: ‘He Can Beat Everybody’

UFC Lightweight Champion Islam Makhachev fully intends on stalling Dustin Poirier’s ongoing title ambitions this weekend, but he hopes it won’t be the end of the road for his latest challenger. 

After cementing his grip on the 155-pound crown with a pair of defenses against then-featherweight kingpin Alexander Volkanovski in 2023, Makhachev is days away from his first threat from an established lightweight contender.

Having returned to winning ways with an emphatic knockout of Benoît Saint Denis at UFC 299 this past March, some favorable results at UFC 300 last month paved the way for Poirier to receive a third shot at undisputed status.

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By the sounds of things, “The Diamond” is expecting it to be his last opportunity — and potentially even his final fight overall, win or lose.

Makhachev Hopes Poirier Pours Cold Water On Retirement Talk

During a recent interview with NBC Sports, Makhachev acknowledged the recent remarks regarding retirement to come from Poirier ahead of their collision on Saturday night.

Some have questioned the Louisianan’s decision to speak on such a topic prior to a title fight, with Daniel Cormier pointing to his experience of doing the same to suggest that “The Diamond” is making a mistake.

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Makhachev appears to share that sentiment, but for a different reason. While plenty have simply suggested that Poirier should keep retirement thoughts to himself until post-fight, the Dagestani doesn’t want to see them reach the surface at all.

“He’s talking about (retirement), but I don’t want him (to) retire after this fight if I beat him,” Makhachev said. “This guy is dangerous. He can beat everybody. He’s number, like, top five in the world, you know? That’s why I don’t think it’s a good idea (to talk) about retiring, because he’s still a very dangerous guy. That’s why I’m preparing very hard for him.”

Fans will have to wait and see when it comes to Poirier’s future in the sport. For now, “The Diamond” will have his sole focus on upsetting the odds to bring Makhachev’s lightweight reign to an end.

Whether that would be followed by a defense or a departure from the sport remains to be seen.

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