UFC news, rumors: Dustin Poirier says win over Khabib Nurmagomedov will make him the best lightweight ever

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It took 22 fights in the Octagon for Dustin Poirier to fight for a championship belt, but when his opportunity arose, 'The Diamond' made the absolute most of it. Now, as he prepares to attempt to upgrade his interim lightweight belt to undisputed, Poirier believes he's ready to claim the title of greatest lightweight ever.

Poirier (25-5) faces off with undefeated lightweight champ Khabib Nurmagomedov (27-0) in the main event of UFC 242 on Saturday from The Arena in Abu Dhabi. It will be the Louisiana native's first fight since a dominating performance against Max Holloway in their UFC 236 clash for the interim title in April.

In Nurmagomedov, Poirier is facing a man with a legitimate claim as the best 155-pound fighter in history. Nurmagomedov is coming off a dominant submission win over Conor McGregor in his last fight at UFC 229 last October. A post-fight brawl between both camps led to a nine-month suspension for the champ.

Poirier's current run of success has included wins over three current or former champions. With a win over Nurmagomedov, Poirier believes he'll have cemented his place in history.

"Max Holloway, Anthony Pettis, Eddie Alvarez, Khabib Nurmagomedov," Poirier told MMA Fighting. "Winning over those guys in a row in main events, over and over, that's the best run in lightweight history."

Not only is Poirier looking for the best run in the history of the division, he's looking to be considered the best of all time. To do so, he's gunning for a stoppage.

"If I go out there and stop Khabib, I'm the best lightweight fighter to ever strap on a pair of four-ounce gloves. Simple and plain," Poirier said. "I'm not wrong in saying it."

More UFC news, rumors

  • Following her shocking 42-second knockout loss to Weili Zhang at this past weekend's UFC Shenzhen event, now-former champ Jessica Andrade released a statement on social media. "I'm not sad, we did everything right," the statement read. "I was very well trained and focused, it was one of the fights that I was the most prepared for, but unfortunately Zhang's hand landed first and I went down, and then it came a series of elbows that I went out and tried to recover, but a knee came right after, so it was impossible to continue. I don't feel embarrassed because that happens to all fighters one day. I happened to Aldo, to Joanna, to Cyborg, to Anderson Silva, to Junior 'Cigano.'"
  • Colby Covington is upping his trash talk game with Kamaru Usman ahead of his prospective clash with the welterweight champ at UFC 244 in November. Never one to shy away from controversial comments, Covington is promising not only to beat Usman, but to injure him as well. "I'm seriously going to leave that dude f--king crippled. I'm going to f--k that dude up," Covington told MMA Fighting. "It's too bad he was running from me for so many years. Now he has no choice."
  • After a cracking upset victory in the co-main event of UFC Shenzhen, Li Jingliang said the world should be ready to embrace the power of Chinese MMA. "Few people knew about the sport of MMA when I started practising it," Jingliang said. "People didn't know that there were Chinese fighters in MMA. But from now on, the world sees us. We are powerful."
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