Dustin Poirier was given a choice by UFC matchmakers after defeating Conor McGregor at UFC 257 in January. He could either face McGregor a third time or fight for the lightweight title. “The Diamond” chose to face McGregor.
For Poirier, the decision was an easy one.
“I made that decision pretty easily,” Poirier told ESPN. “If I’m the best in the world then I’m going to beat Conor and fight for the belt. It’s like doubling down on yourself. I”m a gambling man and I believe in my skills in fighting, so I just doubled down.”
Titles and accolades don’t pay the bills. Ultimately, Poirier’s decision came down to money.
“Me fighting for the belt, I wouldn’t get pay-per-view (revenue). I would have gotten a base salary of probably not even a third of my base salary for this fight. It just doesn’t make sense. I’m a prize fighter,” he said. “I’m going to make six, seven, ten times the amount of money to fight Conor again – Like I said, I’m a father, a husband, and I have priorities.”
“I wouldn’t have gotten pay-per-view points for the title fight. The Conor fight, I have pay-per-view points built in. There’s no question,” Poirier explained.
The trilogy fight between Poirier and McGregor headlines the UFC 264 pay-per-view event on July 10 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. While Poirier opted to face McGregor a third time rather than compete for the title, he’s confident that a title fight awaits the winner of the UFC 264 main event.
“I was pushing the fight at a heavier weight. I wanted to fight at 170 because I didn’t want to cut down to 155 again. But he wants to do it at 155. The UFC wants it at 155, so I know what that means. That means the winner of this fight is fighting for the belt,” Poirier said.
“My goal still is to be the world champion.”