Dustin Poirier vs. Michael Chandler Set for UFC 281 at Madison Square Garden

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 7, 2022

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Dustin Poirier and Michael Chandler will fight at UFC 281 on Nov. 12.

UFC chief business officer Hunter Campbell confirmed to Brett Okamoto of ESPN that Poirier and Chandler will cross paths inside Madison Square Garden. According to Okamoto, Chandler has also signed a new contract with UFC that locks him in for multiple fights.

UFC 281 will be headlined by Israel Adesanya's middleweight title defense against Alex Pereira.

The stakes won't be as high for Chandler vs. Poirier, but their bout will help to establish the hierarchy near the top of the lightweight division. Poirier and Chandler sit second and fifth, respectively, in UFC's divisional rankings.

Chandler fought Charles Oliveira at UFC 262 in May 2021 to determine a lightweight champion following the retirement of Khabib Nurmagomedov. Oliveira won with a second-round TKO and went on to successfully defend the title against Poirier at UFC 269 in December, winning via a rear-naked choke in the third round.

The lightweight division was subsequently thrown into flux this May when Oliveira failed to make weight ahead of a clash with Justin Gaethje. The Brazilian was stripped of the title but became the No. 1 contender for the vacant belt by submitting Gaethje in the first round.

Poirier hasn't competed in the Octagon since his loss to Oliveira, while Chandler rebounded from his defeat with a vicious second-round knockout of Tony Ferguson at UFC 274 in May.

One of the two can make a major statement in the Big Apple this fall.


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