Poirier and Chandler lived up to expectations. A wild duel with an unexpected ending


Michael lost by submission for the first time in his career

Dustin Poirier (28-7) defeated Michael Chandler (23-7) ahead of schedule at UFC 281. The fight fully lived up to expectations. Crazy exchanges, the initiative passed from hand to hand, and a bright finale.

Dustin is close to a title shot again. And the champion is again a Russian wrestler who loves to lie on his opponents for a long time

Poirier started the meeting badly, then corrected himself, and then almost lost ahead of schedule.

Dustin Poirier always starts long. Until he warms up, while he swings, he will get used to the opponent, to his style. Chandler should have taken the fight from the very beginning, which is exactly what he loves to do and practices all the time.

Michael started with strikes. I didn’t get it with low kicks, but I got it with middle kicks – the right one hit the ribs. And then he switched to the destruction mode on his hands. Blow after blow took out Poirier’s head. Dustin was squeezed by the cage, clearly felt discomfort from the blows so much that it seemed that at least a knockdown was about to come. But it was Michael who broke everything.

After a successful series of hits, Chandler decided to transfer his opponent to the ground. The idea turned out to be, to put it mildly, not very good. In general, it may have cost the outsider the victory. On the floor, Michael failed to get anything. We twirled while the American was looking for a position. Then he tried to go to the reception – Dustin did not give. As a result, the athletes got up, but Poirier had already recovered and started working.

What cannot be taken away from Dustin is his accuracy in boxing. After a few blows, he smashed the opponent’s face to the state of blood pouring all around. Moreover, the closer the final of the first round was, the stronger the opponents changed positions. Now Chandler was accepting and was close to an early defeat, and Poirier poured. A few more seconds, and Michael would be guaranteed to be knocked down at least, but the final of the round stopped this show.

In the second round, Michael continued to put pressure on the line of struggle – and this time it came out. Chandler translated Poirier and spun him around on canvas for a whole round. Confidently poured blood on the back of the opponent and tried to go to the choke hold. Then he attacked at the cage. It turned out very dangerous and harsh. Dustin just endured.

Porrier did not succeed in seizing the initiative on the ground, but on the whole he defended well. Chandler was several times close to rear naked choke – a technique that Dustin lost more than once, but the American did not let his opponent do anything.

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The second round was entirely for Chandler. He moved his opponent several times, controlled him, and although he did not manage to overcome him, he looked better even with a completely broken nose. The third should have continued. But, as it turned out, it didn’t.

In the third round, Poirier came out with a clear intention to work from a distance and try to knock out his counterpart in the standing position. From the very first seconds, Dustin began to hit, and Chandler looked for his chances both in striking and when transferring to the ground. Several such attempts ended in failure, when suddenly Michael grabbed his counterpart’s leg and transferred him to the floor.

It suddenly turned out that Porrier could also attack in the fight. Dustin moved behind his back, grabbed the torso with his legs and began to attack with punches. After that, he smoothly but surely reached the opponent’s neck and immediately performed a choke hold. A perfect win on a field where the opponent thought he was better. And not unreasonably after the second round.

But still, it was impossible to relax or allow such situations to occur. Dustin is not the best fighter, but he can do something, he has a black belt in jiu-jitsu, and if he has already created a moment, he will not miss it.

On the one hand, Chandler clearly lost his chance. If he continued the attacks in the first round, holding the opponent at the cage, he could press. On the other hand, all these “woulds” do not work, because he has already done everything and has not coped with what his counterpart was leading to.

What’s next?

Chandler’s stats in the UFC aren’t great. 2 wins and 3 losses. In addition, he is 36 and his head clearly does not hold the way it did a few years ago. It is unlikely that this is already the end of a career, but there are few fights left.

Michael is physically strong, can force a fight on anyone, but does he have time to get to a title shot? Hardly. The American can have two or three more cool bright fights against the top lightweights, and that’s it. If you’re lucky, he’ll break through to a title shot. But this is only on condition that there are too many circumstances.

Poirier is close to a title chance. Dustin returned after a year-long break, suffered, but won very confidently. But whether he will meet with Islam Makhachev is not up to him to decide.

Shortly before their meeting, a duel was announced between the current lightweight champion and the current featherweight champion Alex Volkanovski, who is also the leader in the ranking of the best fighters in the pound-for-pound promotion.

There are high hopes for Volkanovski. He is strong, athletic and knows how to do everything in a cage. He just comes out and pushes his opponents. Whether he is big enough to fight at lightweight is unknown. But technically, he can impose a fight on the overall Makhachev.

It is with the winner of this pair that Poirier will meet. And neither with that, nor with that will not be easy. Volkanovski starts from the first seconds, and this terror will have to be endured. Plus, he’s just as athletic as Chandler, but more precise and articulate.

Makhachev is a fan of lying on opponents in the style of Khabib. There isn’t a lot of interesting stuff here, but Dustin will have a much harder time defending against him than against Chandler. Yet the champion is a more skillful wrestler.

At the same time, both the first and second Porrier, in theory, can spread out on their hands and even finish. So Dustin has an interesting confrontation ahead. Whoever was standing in the opposite corner.