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The UFC’s Lightweight Division Has A New Interim Champ!
At UFC 236 in Atlanta, Max Holloway and Dustin Poirier squared off to see who would get the eventual shot at Khabib Nurmagomedov. Holloway was stepping up from Featherweight where he is champion, where Poirier has been steadily beating all of the top dogs at Lightweight.
The UFC’s Lightweight division has been quite the spectacle since Conor McGregor won the Lightweight title. As Conor left to fight Mayweather the division was clamoring to sort itself out and find a contender to fight McGregor when he returned. Except the return didn’t happen as many in the UFC had hoped. In that time we saw the rise of eventual champ Khabib Nurmagomedov.
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While Khabib completed his fated championship run with a win over Al Iaquinta, Holloway and Poirier were stacking up victories in impressive fashion. Holloway was actually slated to fight Khabib after Tony Ferguson had to withdraw. Sadly Holloway was unable to safely cut the weight to 155 according to UFC staff. So going into the bout with Poirier many pundits were looking for Holloway and Khabib to have their match.
Dustin Poirier in the meantime was beating the likes of Anthony Pettis, Justin Gaethje, and Eddie Alvarez. At one point it looked as though Dustin would get a big payday fight with Nate Diaz but the bout never came to fruition. When the fight was originally made many people were surprised but quickly realized the potential fireworks in the rematch.
On Saturday night the fight took place after a STELLAR co-main event for the Interim Middleweight championship between Israel Adesanya and Kelvin Gastelum. To say this fight had big shoes to fill would be an understatement. Thankfully these to staples of the UFC put on a memorable fight.
Although, Holloway definitely was able to land shots they lacked the ‘pop’ that Poirier’s had. Poirier has made a career landing heavy shots on folks who just can’t seem to weather the storm. Anyone that can’t stop Justin Gaethje in a fight, has some SERIOUS power. As the fight went on Holloway began wearing the damage.
Both athletes showed some love for each other as the bout came to a close. Holloway will more than likely return to the 145 lb division and take on the many challengers that lay in wait. Whereas Poirier has surely punched his ticket to take on the current champ in a unification bout against Khabib.
Here is a quick octagon interview with the new Interim champ, and the featherweight champ. What a refreshing attitude these two had. It’s great to see, and it’s also great for the UFC!
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