UFC Star Dustin Poirier Told to Retire From Mixed Martial Arts

Dustin Poirier

Getty Dustin Poirier

UFC lightweight stars Dustin Poirier, Justin Gaethje and Michael Chandler were told by Arman Tsarukyan to retire from mixed martial arts.

Per the official UFC standings, Tsarukyan is currently ranked No. 9 in the division behind No. 5 Chandler, No. 3 Gaethje and No. 2 Poirier. And during a recent interview with Hardcore MMA, the 19-3 professional fighter took aim at the veterans.

“All of them need to retire,” Tsarukyan said (transcribed via Red Corner MMA). “[Beneil] Dariush, no, not him. Chandler, Poirier, Gaethje — just get rid of them. Eliminate from the top 15. All they do is fight each other and that’s it. They don’t want to fight anyone. Those three guys are my least favorite fighters.

Tsarukyan, who recently got back on the winning track last weekend when he bested fellow rising contender Damir Ismagulov via unanimous decision, then focused in on Chandler, who he called “not a threat.”

“Of course,” Tsarukyan said when asked if he wanted to fight them. “Chandler is not a threat. He can’t do anything to Islam [Makhachev]. He charges like a bull in rounds one and two. If you watch his fight with Gaethje, he fought like a dummy. You’re a wrestler. Why are you fighting in stand-up with him? You pick him up, set him down and don’t even get the position. Why did you even pick him up? Even threw him over the shoulder.

“You call that a wrestler? If you pick him up, you have to get the position. Irrational — no logic. He’s old and it’s time to retire.”

Tsarukyan Is 6-2 as a UFC Athlete

Tsarukyan made his UFC debut in 2019 against Makhachev, the man who became the lightweight king in October. Makhachev defeated Tsarukyan via unanimous decision, which fueled a subsequent five-fight win streak for the latter. It was snapped by Mateusz Gamrot in June during Tsarukyan’s first UFC headliner, with Gamrot taking the victory by unanimous decision.

As mentioned, Tsarukyan bounced back on December 17 when the fighter leaned into his ever-improving grappling and beat Ismagulov.

When asked who was Makhachev’s toughest test in the 155-pound division, Tsarukyan pointed to himself.

“That would be No. 9,” Tsarukyan said. “No. 9 will give him [the] most competitive fight out of all top-15 fighters. I’m sure of it. I showed in my UFC debut that I can compete with him. He has since improved and so have I. Hopefully, we’ll fight again.”

Tsarukyan Wants to Fight Former 155-Pound Champion Charles Oliveira or Dariush Next

Speaking with the media during the UFC Vegas 66 post-fight press conference, Tsarukyan called for a shot at the recently dethroned lightweight champion, Charles Oliveira. He also shared his interested in fighting Beneil Dariush, who is ranked No. 4.

“My goal is to beat everybody that the UFC gives me,” Tarukyan said. “It doesn’t matter who it’s going to be. But I would like to have my next fight with Charles Oliveira or Beneil Dariush because I deserve to have big names. They don’t have a fight now, and I’m ready.”

Dariush is coming off a unanimous decision win over Gamrot, the last man to defeat Tsarukyan, at UFC 280. That same night, Oliveira dropped his belt to Makhachev via second-round submission.

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