Poirier Recounts Submission On Nurmagomedov
Although Dustin Poirier was dominated in his lightweight title fight defeat to Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 242 in September, he arguably came closest to inflicting the latter’s first-ever career defeat.
When Nurmagomedov attempted a takedown in the third round, Poirier countered with a guillotine which looked to be sunk in tight as many wondered whether we were in for a shock.
However, “The Eagle” defended it well and eventually got out of it after before going on to submit Poirier with a rear-naked choke that same round.
Jiu-jitsu experts later assessed the guillotine stating that “The Diamond” should have gone full guard if he wanted to get Nurmagomedov to tap. That’s something Poirier acknowledges as he recounted how close he was to submitting the champion.
“Man, it was close. It was as close as it can get,” Poirier said on the UFC Unfiltered podcast. “I would have finished a lot of guys in the UFC with that choke — a lot of guys. And I finish a lot of guys in the gym, all the time. Doing jiu-jitsu as long as you have, and just having a feel, if there’s a centimeter of space where he can roll his hips to the mat and just create a little bit of space or a little bit of breathing time.
“I should have went full guard. I should have controlled his whole body and his hips. I could have really folded him over there if I would have been full guard. But simple things like that which would have finished 90 percent of the guys — that ten percent or upper five percent that Khabib obviously is in, you just don’t finish guys with that. It has to be perfect and it’s my fault. It’s a lag and a mistake in technique and you know, it’s all on me.”
"(Your submission attempts) need to be perfect."
— UFC (@ufc) March 25, 2020
A small mistake cost Poirier what would have been the biggest and most career-defining win of his career. And he will undoubtedly make sure to rectify that if he ends up facing Nurmagomedov again.