Dustin Poirier has revealed he was called upon for a potential headlining spot on the UFC 294 card if Alex Volkanovski ended up not being an option.
The UFC was forced to scramble when its planned UFC 294 main event between lightweight champion Islam Makhachev and Charles Oliveira was off after “do Bronx” suffered a cut during sparring. Ultimately, the UFC went with reigning featherweight titleholder Alexander Volkanovski as Makhachev’s opponent after calling Poirier and Justin Gaethje.
Dustin Poirier Received Call For UFC 294
During an interview with Mike Heck of MMAFighting, Dustin Poirier recalled receiving a call from UFC Chief Business Officer Hunter Campbell about possibly replacing Oliveira for the title fight with Makhachev.
“The day they called me, I had just landed maybe two-and-a-half hours in Florida before the call to check on my condo, and I stayed there for maybe like five days to get some training in with the team there ’cause I haven’t seen them in a while,” Poirier said. “So, I get back to my condo, I’m unpacking my bags and my phone rings, I see it’s Hunter. I’m all jacked up on Celsius, dude. I answer the phone, ‘Let’s go.'”
Poirier made it clear that he was never promised the opportunity. He was simply asked if he can fight and if his weight would be an issue.
“He kept quiet for a while, and then all the news started breaking, but he didn’t tell me, ‘Hey, you’re the guy,’ he asked me if I’d do it,” Poirier said. “I said, ‘Yes,’ he told me to give him one day, and I guess he was waiting on Alexander to commit.”
Poirier said he was willing to go and kept himself in good shape to make the title fight official if he was the final choice. Time will tell if Poirier will get a chance to unseat Makhachev in the down the line.
Here is MMAFighting’s full interview with Dustin Poirier: