Note: This article has been updated on June 16 to reflect the latest odds for Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Dustin Poirier.
By defeating Max Holloway at UFC 236 on Saturday, April 13, Dustin Poirier not only claimed the UFC Interim Lightweight Championship but the opportunity to challenge current lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov next. Several bookmakers have already released odds ahead of the highly-anticipated UFC Lightweight Championship bout that is expected to take place later this year.
If there were any doubts surrounding whether Poirier will, in fact, be granted the next title shot against Nurmagomedov, Dana White did his best to squash them by confirming that “Poirier will fight Khabib next.”
Nurmagomedov is currently on the sidelines until later this year following a retroactive nine-month suspension for his actions after the main event bout at UFC 229. Although eligible to return from July 6 onward, Nurmagomedov plans to return to the cage in September this year.
I don’t agree with the judges 49:46, I got a draw, my respect to both fighters, and Porier’s achievement so far cannot be denied, my congratulations Dustin, see you in September. 🦅 vs 💎
— khabib nurmagomedov (@TeamKhabib) April 14, 2019
Now on a five-fight winning streak (not including the no-contest with Eddie Alvarez), Dustin Poirier has emerged as one of the most dangerous competitors in the UFC’s lightweight division. With wins over Anthony Pettis, Justin Gaethje, Alvarez and now Holloway, Poirier’s list of recorded wins at 155-pounds is arguably the best in the division today.
At UFC 236, Poirier showcased all of the skills and technique we’ve come to expect from “The Diamond,” together with the incredible determination and heart that many refer to as ‘the dog’ inside Poirier. To take the best shots from high-volume strikers such as Gaethje and Holloway and continue marching forward is a true testament to Poirier’s ability.
The current odds for Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Dustin Poirier stand as follows:
- Khabib Nurmagomedov: -350
- Dustin Poirier: +290
The opening odds were:
- Khabib Nurmagomedov: -240
- Dustin Poirier: +205
So far, that’s a +21.6% swing for Dustin Poirier’s odds, after moving from +205 to +290. This line movement indicates that there was lots of money coming in for Nurmagomedov at those opening odds.
For comparative purposes, Conor McGregor opened at +135 before his bout with Nurmagomedov at UFC 229 and drifted out slightly over time. Al Iaquinta’s first released line was +550 and actually shortened at most bookmakers. Edson Barboza’s odds started at +180 before drifting out to +342 at some bookmakers.
Here are the opening odds for Poirier and Nurmagomedov’s last five fights:
Dustin Poirier last five fights
- vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov: +205
- vs. Max Holloway: +170
- vs. Eddie Alvarez: -145
- vs. Justin Gaethje: -130
- vs. Anthony Pettis: +100
Khabib Nurmagomedov last five fights
- vs. Dustin Poirier: -240
- vs. Conor McGregor: -165
- vs. Al Iaquinta: -1050
- vs. Edson Barboza: -260
- vs. Michael Johnson: -370