Islam Makhachev Expects Easy Win Over Dustin Poirier at UFC 302

Islam Makhachev is confident he’s got Dustin Poirier’s number for their upcoming clash at UFC 302. He’s eyeing a quick finish.

The fight’s set to headline this weekend’s event at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. It’s a big one for Poirier, marking his third shot at UFC gold. His previous attempt was thwarted by Khabib Nurmagomedov, Makhachev’s close teammate, back in 2019.

Makhachev isn’t seeing much change in Poirier since then. He’s pretty sure Poirier and his coach, Mike Thomas Brown, doubt a victory is even on the cards at UFC 302. Despite acknowledging Poirier’s striking prowess, Makhachev sees himself as a nightmare matchup for the Louisiana fighter.

“Honestly, he’s the same, you know. Maybe [he’s aged,]” Makhachev remarked during UFC 302 media day. He’s convinced neither Poirier nor his coach believe they can secure a win. “And I know I can make this fight easy… Honestly, my style, it’s the worst style for him.”

Makhachev’s camp is known for its formidable grappling, but they’ve been upping their game in striking too. He’s confident he can go toe-to-toe with Poirier in stand-up exchanges but hints he might just stick to wrestling to simplify the night.

“Yeah, I can strike with him, but I told you guys, if I want to make this fight easy, I know the way… Always when his opponent pressures him, takes him down; he has the same problem always.”

Makhachev’s reign as the lightweight champ began with a submission win over Charles Oliveira in 2022. He’s defended his title twice since, most recently with a head kick knockout. Poirier, on the other hand, is coming off a knockout win himself, looking to rebound from a previous defeat.

So, there you have it. The stage is set for UFC 302, and it’s shaping up to be a showdown you won’t want to miss. Will Makhachev’s confidence translate into victory, or will Poirier upset the odds? Only time will tell.

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