The lightweight division of the UFC has long drawn plenty of public attention and often not just for the quality of the fighters in the mix.
Having global superstars such as Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov within one weight bracket has inevitably elevated the public awareness of the lightweight division in UFC and there are plenty of fighters that continue to make a name for themselves on the periphery too.
None more so than Dustin Poirier, one of the most experienced fighters in the UFC, who has fought his fair share of big names over his career.
With defeats against the aforementioned Khabib and ‘The Korean Zombie’ but wins over McGregor and Eddie Alvarez, Poirier’s stock has continued to rise since his first professional UFC bout over a decade ago.
In his most recent showing at UFC 281 in New York. Poirier showed all of his class and guile to overcome the much-fancied Michael Chandler, winning by submission at a jubilant Madison Square Gardens.
Whilst nobody had gone so far as to write off Poirier, there is no denying he is at the back end of his career aged 33 and the result over Chandler at UFC 281 has certainly elevated his status once more.
With Khabib and McGregor showing no sign of returning to the octagon any time soon, the reality of the situation for Poirier remains that he is still pushing his way up the lightweight rankings, in a now more open division.
Charles Oliveira had too much for Poirier when the two met in December 2021 but he has since slipped to second in the lightweight division rankings.
Islam Makhachev is currently topping the rankings and for Poirier, it seems to be the logican next fight, following his win over Chandler in New York.
Whilst Poirier ponders his next big bout, the impressive Makhachev has already looked to secure his place in UFC history by challenging featherweight Alex Volkanovski, who comes up a division for a title challenge.
Australian Volkanovski clearly gives up plenty of natural weight and size to Makhachev but he can be hugely dangerous on his day and the clash of styles makes for a fascinating match up on paper.
As the heavier fighter, Makhachev starts as the strong favorite for the bout which is to take place in February 2023 in Perth – as Volkanovski looks for home support to pull him over the line.
At -333, Islam Makhachev starts as the heavy favourite for UFC 284, which promises to be yet another incredible showcase of the sport.
Volkanovski meanwhile comes in at +210 odds with the BetRivers New York bonus deal and whilst he has to give up plenty in weight and size, the wiry Australian packs plenty of punch.