Former interim UFC lightweight champion, Dustin Poirier maintains he would have preferred to face upcoming opponent, one-time title chaser, Michael Chandler over the course of five rounds rather than the sanctioned three round limit, as the pair prepare to do battle at UFC 281 on November 12.
Poirier, the current #3 ranked lightweight contender, has been sidelined since December of last year at UFC 269, headlining in an eventual fourth round standing rear-naked choke loss against former undisputed titleholder, Charles Oliveira.
As for Chandler, the Kill Cliff FC mainstay turned in his second UFC victory back in May, stopping former interim titleholder, Tony Ferguson with a stunning second front kick knockout win.
Linked with an eventual showdown against American Top Team trainee, Poirier upon his landing in the Octagon, the duo will finally clash as part of a blockbuster Madison Square Garden card on November 12. in New York City.
Dustin Poirier prefers five round fight with Michael Chandler at UFC 281
Set to take place over the course of three rounds, Dustin Poirier, at least, claimed how he wished the promotion would have elected to book a five round, non-headlining bout, as they’ve done in the past.
“I really wanted to do a five round fight,” Dustin Poirier told Heavy Sports reporter, Nikhil Sharma, during a recent interview. “Especially for me, I like to get a rhythm and a timing, and I feel like the better fighter – unless something happens early in one of the first couple of rounds, the better fighter usually wins in the distance.”
Previewing his pivotal potential title eliminator against Chandler, Poirier hopes to turn in a “clean” performance, however, insists the bout could go down as the Fight of the Century due to the pair’s abilities.
“He’s (Michael Chandler) a former (Bellator) world champion,” Dustin Poirier explained. “He’s one of the best 155-pounders in the world, so he’s a very, very tough opponent. If it’s Fight of the Year, that means it’s back-and-forth. I’d like it to be clean, one-sided if I couple paint the perfect picture.”
“But I don’t shy away from those firefights,” Poirier continued. “I’m going to try my best to stay calm under fire and technical, but if he competes to the best of his ability, and I do the same, it coule be Fight of the Century.” (Transcribed by MMA Junkie)
Prior to his submission loss to Oliveira, Poirier scored a pair of back-to-back rematch and subsequent rubber-match wins over former two-weight champion, Conor McGregor last year.