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Dustin Poirier Reflects on UFC 302 Loss, Considers Retirement & Future in MMA

Dustin Poirier is considering retirement after his loss to Islam Makhachev at UFC 302, where he narrowly missed out on winning the lightweight championship.

As he recovers from serious injuries, Poirier is uncertain about his future in MMA but acknowledges his continued passion and skill in the sport.

Key Takeaways
  • Dustin Poirier hinted at retirement after his UFC 302 loss to Islam Makhachev.
  • Poirier praised the new UFC gloves for their design despite experiencing increased bruising.
  • Poirier remains uncertain about his future in the sport, balancing his love for fighting with the toll it has taken on his body.

Dustin Poirier’s Journey After UFC 302 Loss

Dustin Poirier faced a tough defeat at UFC 302 against Islam Makhachev for the UFC lightweight championship.

Following the loss, Poirier revealed that he had been considering retirement. Had he won the championship in Newark, he planned to retire immediately.

I was going to put the belt down with the gloves,” Poirier said on “The MMA Hour” with Ariel Helwani.

But this is my story, and it happened the way it was supposed to happen for my journey. It’s been written already.”

Before UFC 302, Poirier had hinted at retiring if he defeated Makhachev. However, he was submitted in the fifth round by Makhachev with a d’arce choke and now faces a period of recovery from damaged ribs, a broken nose, and a partially torn ACL.

Poirier is Yet to Make His Final Decision

While Poirier has not made a final decision about his future, UFC 302 might have been his last fight.

I’m leaning towards being done,” Poirier shared with Helwani.

Especially getting the title fight. How many more times would I need to fight to get myself back into position to fight for the world title? I don’t know. But like I said, I’m not going to do it again. I’m not going to fight five more times trying to earn another title shot.

Poirier is in a difficult position, unsure of his next steps and taking things day by day. He acknowledged the challenges of returning to the top and the physical toll fighting has taken on him.

Dustin Poirier on His UFC Future

Though Poirier is not entirely set on retirement, he is leaning toward it.

At 35, he is far from another title shot anytime soon. He expressed uncertainty about the reasons to continue fighting, given the physical and mental toll it has taken on him.

I can’t say I’ll never fight again, but I just don’t know the reason,” Poirier said.

What am I going to fight for? To get into a battle? I love that, but I’ve taken some lumps over the years. It has to be for something.”

Despite the loss, Poirier proved he is still one of the best lightweights in the world, giving Makhachev a tough UFC fight for nearly five rounds.

This performance makes it difficult for him to commit to retirement, knowing how capable he still is.

Poirier’s Experience with New UFC Gloves

At UFC 302, the new gloves design was introduced to reduce eye pokes and improve hand safety.

Poirier praised the new design, mentioning that they helped keep his fist closed better than the previous gloves.

I like them, I like them. My hands kind of got a little banged up,” Poirier said.

They’re thinner, my hand is still healing. But I like them because I can make a closed fist very tight. The other gloves were very tough to make a closed fist.

However, he said that the new gloves resulted in more bruising. Poirier pointed out that his knuckles were more severely bruised despite landing fewer strikes against Makhachev than in his fight with Max Holloway in 2019.

In the Max fight, there was a lot of volume thrown, so my knuckles were raw but not this deep a cut on my knuckle,” Poirier explained.

It’s different [the gold color], I don’t mind it. I see people talking trash. To each their own. I like it, thought it was cool.

What’s Next for Dustin Poirier?

Dustin Poirier is at a crossroads after his tough fight at UFC 302. While he thinks about retiring, he’s still not sure if he’s ready to stop fighting.

He knows he is still a top fighter, but the path to another title shot is long and hard. Poirier will take some time to heal and decide what’s best for his future. Whether he fights again or retires, his fans will support him and respect his journey.

In the meantime, Poirier continues to reflect on his career and the impact he has made in the UFC.

His love for the sport and his competitive spirit will guide his next steps. Everyone is eager to see what he decides and to support him in whatever path he chooses.