UFC Fight Night results, highlights: Dustin Poirier outlasts Dan Hooker in instant lightweight classic

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Nearly 10 months after a one-sided title loss in the sport's toughest division, former interim lightweight champion Dustin Poirier was willing to walk through hell to hold his place in line. 

Poirier, in his first appearance since hip and labrum surgery, outlasted Dan Hooker in a 155-pound duel that was nothing short of savage theater. Poirier (26-6, 1 NC) took home a unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 48-46) in a Fight of The Year contender that was a perfect showcase of technique, heart and violence. 

"It was a tough one. Dan came to fight and is a tough guy," Poirier said. "He is on the rise and really thought he was going to get past me and talked a lot of trash like he was going to move forward and fight the champ. But I put the work in and I trust my team and my work ethic. I came in here and pulled one out and I have a few more rounds in me."

The main event of UFC Fight Night in Las Vegas saw the 31-year-old Poirier survive a vicious assault from Hooker (20-9) over the first two rounds that appeared to leave Poirier hurt on multiple occasions as each one traded their best shots. 

Can't get enough UFC? Subscribe to our podcast State of Combat with Brian Campbell where we break down everything you need to know in the Octagon, including a breakdown of Poirier vs. Hooker with UFC Hall of Famer 'Suga' Rashad Evans below.

Not only were both of the opening rounds instant classics inside the UFC Apex facility, it was Round 2 that already appears to be a front-runner for best of the year. Both lightweights ended the round with faces covered in blood following a cut below the right eye of Poirier and a nasty one on the right eyelid of Hooker. 

"The only time I was hurt in the fight was when Dan got me against the fence and slipped a knee in there [in Round 2]," Poirier said. "It was pretty impressive how high he got his hips up without telegraphing. I kind of flashed out for a second and he was throwing hooks at me but we regrouped and came back stronger. "That's why a fight isn't a fight until there is something to overcome and we came back tonight."

Hooker, 30, began to slow down just a bit and look for takedowns in Round 3, but a pattern developed that would carry through to the end of the fight where Poirier was not only more active from the bottom, he outworked Hooker for numerous submission attempts. 

The savage nature of Round 2 was replaced by more of a technical tone two rounds later as each fighter traded hard jabs and body shots, but it was Poirier who had Hooker fighting for survival late after applying a triangle choke, an armbar and a guillotine. 

"I could have been a little bit sharper," Poirier said. "I didn't get out of the way of a few shots. It's not that I disrespected Dan's power, but I stayed in the pocket too long. I landed a couple of good ones that were making his head snap back and I thought I was maybe stealing the rounds but I could do better than that."

Poirier walked back to his stool before the final round and was asked by his corner whether he was having fun. After responding with, "I'm having a blast," he began to systematically break Hooker down in the final round and twice dropped him with stiff jabs and left crosses while fighting off takedown attempts.

The victory keeps Poirier within striking distance of the lightweight title as the division awaits the winner of champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, who submitted Poirier last September, against current interim titleholder Justin Gaethje. Before the fight, Poirier named top contenders Tony Ferguson and Conor McGregor as possible opponents who could be next if he was victorious, although he declined to call out anyone after the win.  

"Maybe I'll fight at the end of the year, maybe I'll fight next year. I don't know," Poirier said. "I just want to go home to be with my daughter. It was the longest layoff of my career. I had to take nine months off and sit on the sidelines and I couldn't put weight on my leg for eight weeks. I had to overcome some things. I want to stay in love with this sport. I don't want to push myself to where I hate this. I just want to do it right and give it my all the right way."

Hooker once again showed a championship level chin and toughness in defeat as the native of New Zealand snapped a three-fight win streak.

In the co-main event, Mike Perry showed he doesn't need a full corner to have success as he battered Mickey Gall over the second and third rounds to score a unanimous decision victory. Perry, who had just his girlfriend Latory Gonzalez by his side, grinded out Gall both on the feet and on the ground with his striking to stall the welterweight prospect. Perry is now 3-4 in his last seven while Gall falls to 2-3 since 2017.

CBS Sports was with you all evening bringing you results and analysis from UFC Fight Night in Las Vegas on Saturday. Check out the full results below.

UFC Fight Night: Poirier vs. Hooker card, results

  • Dustin Poirier def. Dan Hooker via unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 48-46)
  • Mike Perry def. Mickey Gall via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Maurice Greene def. Gian Villante via third-round submission (arm triangle choke)
  • Brendan Allen def. Kyle Daukaus via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27, 30-27)
  • Takashi Sato def. Jason Witt via first-round TKO (punches)
  • Julian Erosa def. Sean Woodson via third-round submission (D'Arce choke)
  • Khama Worthy def.Luis Pena via third-round submission (guillotine choke) 
  • Tanner Boser def. Philipe Lins via first-round TKO (punches)
  • Kay Hansen def. Jinh Yu Frey via third-round submission (armbar)
  • Youssef Zalal def. Jordan Griffin via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
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@espnmma via Twitter
June 28, 2020, 3:51 AM

Scorecards: 48-47, 48-47 and 48-46 for Dustin Poirier!

@espnmma via Twitter
June 28, 2020, 3:35 AM
@espnmma via Twitter
June 28, 2020, 3:35 AM

R5: Poirier finishes strong and they go to the scorecards. 49-48 for Poirier on my scorecard.

@espnmma via Twitter
June 28, 2020, 3:31 AM

R5: Short uppercut from Poirier in the clinch and another big shot. He caught Hooker coming in with a stiff left cross and drops him to a knee. Poirier takes his back on the ground and looks to work a choke.

R5: Poirier winning the boxing exchanges back on the feet. Hooker goes for another takedown but gets stuffed. He is exhausted.

R5: Another hard left hand from Poirier. Hooker goes for a takedown and lands it. Let's see what he can do with this.

R5: Poirier jabbing hard and Hooker's head is snapping back each time. Lead left hand from Hooker but Poirier answers with hard jabs to briefly drop him.

ROUND 5: Poirier looks to be the fresher fighter. Stiff jabs from both. Hooker works the body with kicks but he looks weary.

I have the fight even entering the final round. This has been a classic.

R4: Give the round to Poirier on my card as Hooker faded a bit, 10-9.

R4: Hooker scores another takedown late and works free form a guillotine attempt.

R4: This is some top level grappling. What a damn fight. They work back to their feet.

R4: Poirier switches to a triangle and arm bar but Hooker is too slippery. Back goes Poirier to an arm bar but Hooker isn't panicking.

R4: Poirier works to take Hooker's back and scores big with strikes from behind. Hooker appears to be fading. Poirier is relentless with punches and leaps onto his back.

R4: They fall to the ground but Poirier breaks free shortly after giving up his back. Another takedown for Hooker but Poirier gets back up and gets a takedown of his own.

R4: Well-timed takedown from Hooker but Poirier gets right back up. Hooker leaps on his back and tries to work a choke.

@espnmma via Twitter
June 28, 2020, 3:22 AM

ROUND 4: They trade jabs. The pace slows down as both are weary and hurt but still coming. Hard jab from Poirier and Hooker answers again. These are STIFF jabs.

R3: Give the round to Poirier on my card for landing the heavier blows. 29-28 for Hooker entering the championship rounds.

R3: They stand up and Poirier lands vicious shots from close range. Both are bleeding. This is insane toughness and cardio.

R3: Good strikes from Poirier while lying on his back but Hooker is controlling for a long stretch from the top. He's using his weight to lay all over Poirier and wear him down.

R3: Takedown for Hooker hits but Poirier applies a deep guillotine attempt. Hooker breaks free and works from top position.

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