Although there has been talking all summer that Charles Oliveira and Dustin Poirier could meet in December, as the Brazilian cited the term as perfect for his first title defense, in recent weeks it no longer seemed to be an option.
Primarily because the UFC 269 event, which takes place Dec. 11, has already got two title fights on the program. Amanda Nunes and Julianna Pena were even announced as the main fights, after which Brandon Moreno and Deiveson Figueiredo were added, but it was not once that one event hosted three fights for the title.
UFC 269 will eventually become another one of them, with a new major fight. And what kind! It’s hard for the UFC to end this year in a better way than fighting for the title of probably the most popular category in recent years.
The 31-year-old Oliveira (31-8, 20-8 UFC) will try to reach his tenth victory in a row in his first title defense, in his certainly toughest and most important fight since becoming a lightweight member. A year older Poirier (28-6, 21-6 UFC) could have fought Oliveira for the title a few months ago, but he chose to do his third fight against Conor McGregor.
This turned out to be a good decision in the end, as he earned a lot of money with the victories against McGregor, but also significantly increased his popularity and recognition. It is the latter that will automatically make this fight greater.
Although Dustin is a challenger, he is certainly a bigger star in this fight than the champion, whose title fight against Michael Chandler did not really achieve great financial success.
Style of fighting
From the stylistic side, we will watch a fight in which Poirier will certainly try to keep the action as much as possible outside the grappling positions, no matter if it is an upper or lower position since Oliveira is brilliant in both.
Of course, this is not the only thing where he is good, since in his last fights he showed that he knows how to hit and he achieved three of the last five victories by knockout. The Brazilian is a record holder in the number of UFC wins by stoppage and wins by forcing surrender, but also in the number of different techniques by which he achieved this.
The fact that he is second in UFC history in terms of bonuses won speaks everything about his attractiveness. So far he has taken 17, only one less than Donald Cerrone. As for Poirier, not enough praise can be said about him in one passage, as he is one of the most complete fighters in the world.
But in this fight, his goal will certainly be to lead Oliveira to a kickboxing fight, where "on paper" Dustin will definitely have the best chance. Although in such an experiment, we must not reject any option of this fight. Absolutely anything is possible in a clash between two grandmasters like this.