A rematch between Eddie Alvarez and Dustin Poirier has seemed inevitable ever since the controversial ending to their rousing first fight at last May’s UFC 211 from Dallas.
And earlier today, it appeared the fight was finally close to happening when Alvarez tweeted he would “see Poirier in Calgary” in reference to July 28’s UFC on FOX 30 from Canada:
— Eddie Alvarez (@Ealvarezfight) May 10, 2018
That fakest of well wishes suggests Alvarez cleared up his recently discussed contract dispute with the UFC, which was reportedly strong enough to state there was that the rematch Poirier was “not f***ing happening” without the new deal.
But now it seems that “The Diamond” is the one denying the fight will happen, as his camp reportedly told ESPN’s Brett Okamoto today that their May 4 deadline to sign the bout was a serious one, causing the bout to ‘one thousand percent’ be off as of now:
Hold the phone on Alvarez, Poirier 2 … I'm told this deadline was not for show. Dustin is not happy about how long this has taken and how it's continued to hold up his life. As of this moment, his side is telling me there is "1,000 percent" no fight right now. https://t.co/bq1vF0u8Yn
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) May 10, 2018
So while Alvarez insists the fight is official from his end, Poirier confirmed his deadline was solid to MMAjunkie yesterday, and Alvarez still hasn’t signed the agreement, he wasn’t really even in discussions for the fight right now:
“I gave him a week deadline for the first time I accepted the fight last week,” Poirier said. “I gave him the whole week, and he still didn’t accept. Then we talked to the UFC and extended it to Monday for him to say yes.
“He still didn’t say yes, so pretty much everything they’re saying now, I don’t know. I’m not even talking with (the UFC).”
Poirier has been campaigning for the obvious rematch ever since Alvarez blasted him with an illegal knee in a fight he felt he was winning (and that was somehow declared a no contest), the former UFC and Bellator champion went on to coach The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) opposite Justin Gaethje instead.
The two fought in a rousing war won by Alvarez at December 2017’s UFC 218, and Poirier also dispatched ‘The Highlight” in another slugfest at April 14’s UFC Glendale, shifting their paths back to one another again.
Overall, however, Poirier is sick of planning his life about Alvarez’ availability, or lack thereof, so he insists the fight won’t happen in Calgary:
“I had a trip to Asia planned,” he said. “I’d have to really cancel a bunch of stuff, and I would have if they’d let me know in the week and a half I gave them to say yes, for him to get his contract figured out.
“I’ll fight him at another date. But it’s looking like Calgary is not going to happen.”
‘The Diamond’ was also still calling him out on Twitter as early as last night, poking fun at the t-shirt Alvarez received for achieving 25 clean USADA drug tests:
Shirt should say 25x didn't sign the contract https://t.co/FpAxRfm4Qg
— The Diamond (@DustinPoirier) May 9, 2018
The negotiations for a rematch many fans believed should have already happened appear to be getting a bit confusing, but it also seems it will happen at some point down the road.
With a mess of a logjam at the top of the immensely talented UFC lightweight division as the UFC awaits the return of champ Khabib Nurmagomedov, former champ Conor McGregor, and former interim champ Tony Ferguson, there probably isn’t a better match-up for either fighter to prove they belong in the title picture with those elite stars.
It’s just going to happen on their own respective terms from the looks of it.