Islam Makhachev urged to fight former lightweight champion

The Russian is considered one of the best fighters in the world

By Web Desk
March 27, 2024
Islam Makhachev raises his UFC lightweight belt. — Reuters

UFC legend Daniel Cormier believes that the UFC setting up a Dustin Poirier vs Islam Makhachev would be a win-win situation for them as both stars would be eager to take on one another.

Cormier stated that fighting an established fighter like Poirier would help Islam become the fighter that he aspires to be as the Americab is widely considered one of the best UFC fighters of all time.

“This is a no-lose situation for the UFC,” Cormier said on his YouTube channel. “Islam wants to fight, so I think you’ve got to try and make that happen as soon as possible. It works. For Dustin Poirier, massive chance. For Islam Makhachev, another former champion you can put under your belt. That is storytelling.

“You can’t control the outcome, but you can put them in a position for someone to make magic and then you, as the company, capitalize on it. I love it. Book it right now, book it: Makhachev vs. Poirier. It will be a massive fight. It really will be the biggest fight that Islam Makhachev has ever had in terms of the box office.”

Makhachev had already taken a dig at Poirier for his two failed attempts at becoming a champion and Cormier believed that the Russian should continue this approach to lighten up the stage for the potential fight.

“I think this is the next logical step in the evolution of Islam Makhachev,” Cormier said. “Now you’ve got to be a little bit more forward. Look, he’s very blunt, a lot of the Dagestanis are. At times, that can get misinterpreted for being disrespectful. 

"Nope, it’s just how they are. They’re very blunt, they’re very direct. While it may come off as (disrespectful), I would steer into that if I’m the champion. I would try to become the evil empire. I would try to become the villain.

“Islam needs to tell Dustin, ‘You’re never going to do it. You don’t belong on my level. You got here because there was no one else.’ That would make the people hate him. That would make people run to support Dustin Poirier.

“That would also make people think about it more, make people care more, make people tap into what they have going on more, and ultimately that’s what’s important. Nothing else. What’s important is people caring.”