Khabib: Poirier Won ‘Temporary Belt’
UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov is still currently finishing a suspension from the aftermath of UFC 229, but his next opponent already seems to be set and he’s already promoting the fight.
Last weekend at UFC 236, Dustin Poirier defeated UFC Featherweight Champion Max Holloway to claim the interim UFC Lightweight Championship. As a result, Poirier is next in line to face Nurmagomedov in an undisputed title fight — pending there are no injuries or Conor McGregor rematches.
When asked about the fight at a recent M-1 Apeha Q&A event, Nurmagomedov restated the plan is for he and Poirier to face off at a UFC pay-per-view in September, possibly in Abu Dhabi.
“Poirier won a temporary belt. Temporary,” Khabib said. “I have a real one. The only thing that attracts me in this battle is the new belt. It’s pretty. And the rival is a very good one, we cannot underestimate him, he defeated many top fighters. In the UFC they say that I will fight Poirer in a little more than five months. It is difficult to negotiate with me, I am with my principles. I hope the negotiations will go well and in September we will fight.”
Nurmagomedov was originally going to wait until November to return, willing to wait out both his suspension and the suspensions of two teammates also involved in the UFC 229 melee. However, negotiations that go right will see the Dagestani champion go through with the September plans.
Nurmagomedov defeated Al Iaquinta to win the then-vacant UFC lightweight championship at UFC 223 before retaining against McGregor at UFC 229. Poirier’s win over Max Holloway snapped Holloway’s 13-fight win streak and extended his own to four straight wins, as well as being unbeaten in his last six with five wins and a No Contest.
Original Story: MMA Mania