Charles Oliveira (32-8) submitted Dustin Poirier (28-7) just seconds into the third round to retain his UFC lightweight crown on Saturday night at UFC 269 from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
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Oliveira came blitzing forward in the opening minutes of the fight and got sent on his back with a stiff shot from Poirier. The champ and challenger wasted no time with a flurry of shots, changing levels with kicks, punches, knees, and elbows. Oliveira pushed Poirier against the cage and went for a takedown, but the challenger rolled right through it. Late in the round, Poirier took a big breath in after a third knee to the body. Poirier laid Oliveira on his back with a big right, but couldn’t finish the fight on the ground. With a minute remaining in the round, Poirier continued to pour it on with shot after shot, snapping the champ’s head with a big left and right, but Oliveira showed no slow down as he continued to respond with shots of his own.
The second began much like the first, with Oliveira walking down the challenger and bringing the fight to him. Oliveira attempted to take Poirier’s back, but the challenger slipped out of it. When he did, Oliveira held on to Poirier’s arm, forcing the challenger roll out and allowing Oliveira to move into guard. From the top, he resorted to big ground-and-pound shots with a slew of gigantic elbows. From the ground, Poirier seemed resigned to waiting out the round as Oliveira ran out the clock with elbow after elbow.
In the third, Oliveira slipped an overhand left, found his way to Poirier’s back and jumped on looking for the standing rear-naked choke to earn the victory.
Poirier bet on himself in June, opting for a trilogy bout with Conor McGregor instead of moving directly into the vacant lightweight title picture. His bet paid off, with his second-consecutive victory over McGregor helping him earn his way back into the UFC title picture just two years after his submission loss to former champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Saturday night was Oliveira’s first title defense after claiming the lightweight crown at UFC 262 with a TKO victory over Michael Chandler earlier this year. Oliveira won his last nine bouts coming into the main event dating back to 2018, including a dominant decision win over Tony Ferguson in December.