Dustin Poirier brings it to the octagon every time he goes out there and last night was no different as “The Diamond” left Saturday’s main vent with a unanimous decision victory over Dan Hooker in what is going to be a “Fight of the Year” candidate.
“It was a tough one, man,” Poirier said in his post-fight interview with the UFC. “Dan came to fight. He’s a tough guy. He’s on the rise and really thought he was going to get passed me. He talked a lot of trash, like, he was going to move forward and fight the champ — but I’m the champ. This is what I love to do. I put all the work in. I trust in my team, skill, and work ethic. I came here, pulled another one out, and had a few more rounds in me.”
Poirier (26-8) was coming off of the longest lay off of his career following hip surgery. The former interim lightweight champion is glad to not only be back competing, but to be back in the win column. While Poirier will celebrate the win, he already looking to make adjustments before gets out and fights again.
“I could have been a little bit sharper,” Poirier said. “I didn’t move 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 should have been sharper. At the end, I started getting in my range and countering off his lazy shots. I landed some good ones and made his head snap back. I was stealing the rounds with shots like that, but I can do better.”
The goal for Poirier is claim to become the undisputed lightweight champion. Prior to Saturday’s fight, he got a chance at UFC gold, but came up short against unbeaten Khabib Nurmagomedov. Now he wants another shot, but he’s fully aware that he may not get that opportunity right away. Instead he’ll look to be active after he heals up and spends some time at home with his family.
“Now that I’m a victor again, I want to get back to the drawing board. I want to keep getting better. I want to stay in love with this sport. I don’t want to push myself so much to where I hate this. I’ve been doing this a long time and pushing myself to the limits every day. So I just want to do it right.”