UFC

Dustin Poirier to get second shot at UFC title

By Sports Desk October 04, 2021

Dustin Poirier has agreed to challenge Charles Oliveira for the UFC lightweight title in December.

After lengthy talks, Poirier, who has a 28-6 record, confirmed on Sunday that he will go up against Oliveira, tweeting "Signed, Sealed, Delivered."

ESPN subsequently reported the 32-year-old's representatives had confirmed the bout will take place at UFC 269 on December 11, as Poirier looks to continue an impressive 2021.

He has twice beaten Conor McGregor this year, first in January at UFC 257 and then again at UFC 264 six months later.

Poirier, a former interim champion, previously challenged former lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov in 2019, though lost via submission.

Oliveira, a year Poirier's junior, will be a similarly stern test. The Brazilian took the title in May after defeating Michael Chandler and is on a nine-fight winning run.

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    Charles Oliveira denied Justin Gaethje from claiming his vacated UFC lightweight championship, winning via submission in the first round at UFC 274 on Saturday.

    Oliveira was stripped of the lightweight belt he held after missing weight, meaning only Gaethje could win the title on Saturday.

    After a furious opening exchange, the 32-year-old secured an 11th consecutive victory, reaffirming his status as the most dominant fighter in the division.

    Extending the UFC record for the most submission wins (16) and most finishes (19), the Brazilian made his status in the division clear despite the vacated title.

    "There's something missing here. The champ has a name and his name is Charles Oliveira," he said post-fight.

    "This is a message to the entire division. I'm a problem for the entire division, look at my team.

    "Dana White, I don't care who you put in front of me. I will take them all on."

    Gaethje came out the blocks quickly and landed some big shots but critically allowed his opponent to stand back up after he was knocked down.

    Given that breathing room, Oliveira recovered immediately, planting a right-hand to get Gaethje down on the ground and then showed composure, not seeking ground-and-pound but a submission.

    Gaethje gave up his back after wriggling out of an initial attempt at a triangle, and Oliveira took advantage from there with a rear-naked choke.

    Esparza wins as Chandler makes vicious KO

    In the co-main event, Carla Esparza claimed victory over Rose Namajunas in a controversial 47-48 49-46 48-47 split decision, to claim the UFC women's strawweight championship.

    In what was a very tepid bout, Namajunas effectively left her fate and belt in the hands of the judges, allowing Esparza to make sporadic forays and takedowns.

    It was very different to the other lightweight bout of the night, where Michael Chandler scored a breathtaking knockout win over Tony Ferguson in the second round.

    After an exciting first round, Chandler ended the fight early with an explosive front kick, catching Ferguson on the chin.

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    Charles Oliveira has been stripped of his belt after failing to make weight for his lightweight title fight with Justin Gaethje at UFC 274. 

    The Brazilian will still take on Gaethje in Nevada on Saturday but a victory would only see the lightweight belt remain vacant. Should Gaethje win, however, he would be crowned champion. 

    Oliveira initially weighed in half a pound over the 155lb limit and was unable to shift it after being granted an extra hour. 

    The UFC did not confirm what fine Oliveira would face for failing to make weight for the main event. 

    Oliveira won the lightweight championship after it was vacated by Khabib Nurmagomedov by beating Michael Chandler at UFC 262 in May 2021. 

    He then mounted a successful defence against Dustin Poirier at UFC 269 in December.

  • UFC heavyweight champion Ngannou expecting to face Fury in 2023 UFC heavyweight champion Ngannou expecting to face Fury in 2023

    UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou is "70 per cent" certain he will face boxing superstar Tyson Fury in a crossover fight next year.

    Fury defeated Dillian Whyte via a sixth-round knockout at Wembley on Saturday to retain his WBC heavyweight title and reiterated afterwards he intends to retire from boxing.

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    "I think it's going to happen, it's just a matter of our promotions, but we will sort this out at some point."

    Ngannou added: "Make it a hybrid fight, something that makes it a little uncomfortable for him as a boxer.

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    "I would say there's a 70 per cent chance [my next opponent] is Tyson Fury. On his side I would say 90 per cent against me."

    Ngannou underwent surgery to repair MCL and ACL injuries earlier this year and is not expected to return to action until November at the earliest.

    The 35-year-old, who retained his heavyweight crown with victory over Ciryl Gane in January, is so determined to face Fury that he will make it part of any deal signed with UFC. 

    "The Tyson Fury fight has to be part of the discussion [with the UFC] – there is no other option," he said.

    "The UFC is a great promotion and I want to keep fighting. The Tyson Fury fight is not my last fight, there's still a lot of fights out there.

    "There's Jon Jones, there's the Stipe Miocic trilogy, there's big fights I can do in the UFC and I'd really like that to happen."

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