Dustin Poirier explains why he wanted his trilogy fight against Conor McGregor to be at welterweight

Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor during UFC 257 pre-fight press conference
Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor during UFC 257 pre-fight press conference
Rajneesh Suhas Reddy

Dustin Poirier recently proposed fighting Conor McGregor in the welterweight division for the trilogy fight. The Notorious One shot down Poirier's proposal with a quick and short response. According to Poirier, he entertained the idea of fighting McGregor in 170lbs to avoid the trouble of weight cutting.

While speaking to ESPN in a recent interview, Dustin Poirier told Ariel Helwani that he weighs close to 180lbs during training camp. Beginning with dieting and weight management even before training camp has become a prerequisite for Poirier to show up in perfect shape for his fights. He alluded to the fact that making the trilogy fight at welterweight will significantly reduce the trouble of weight management. Dustin Poirier said:

"Look at these things (massive muscles) Ariel. Does that answer the question? I was 178(lbs) today. I started like a pre-camp. The level of these fights and the level that I pushed my body to at the end of the training camp, the shape I show up in to fights now... I have to get in shape before I go to south Florida (Training camp) to get in shape.
"I have to train before the training starts. I am training all year round, but recently I started dieting before I leave for training camp just to get a step ahead."

No.1 ranked UFC lightweight Dustin Poirier (27-6-1NC MMA, 19-5-1NC UFC) is scheduled to fight the former two-division champion, Conor McGregor (22-5 MMA, 10-3 UFC), in the main event of UFC 264 on July 10. McGregor has fought in three divisions - featherweight, lightweight and welterweight - during his eight-year run in the UFC. After starting his UFC career at featherweight, Poirier eventually moved up to lightweight in 2015 where became interim champion by defeating Max Holloway at UFC 236 in 2019.

Poirier has stated his struggles with weight cutting on multiple occasions in recent times and speculated about finishing his fighting career at welterweight.

Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor fought each other in two different weight classes for their previous fights

The UFC 264 trilogy fight between Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier is an immediate rematch of their second fight that headlined the UFC 257 event in January 2021. Perceived as the last chance to bring retired champion Khabib Nurmagomedov out of retirement, it took place in the lightweight division. Poirier won the bout via TKO in the second round to set the stage for the trilogy fight to happen.

Poirier and McGregor crossed paths with each other for the first time all the way back in September 2014. Both fighters were rising prospects in the UFC's featherweight division, then ruled by long-reigning champion Jose Aldo. McGregor defeated Poirier via first-round knockout and landed in the title picture. A similar result in the January 2021 rematch was likely to put an end to the competitive rivalry. However, Poirier's upset win nullified the 2014 loss and set the stage for a trilogy fight.

Edited by Prem Deshpande
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