Justin Gaethje explains why he can’t blame Dustin Poirier for rejecting TUF coaching offer

Justin Gaethje says Dustin Poirier rejected the UFC's offer for them to opposing coaches in The Ultimate Fighter.

By: Milan Ordoñez | 10 months
Justin Gaethje explains why he can’t blame Dustin Poirier for rejecting TUF coaching offer
Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje as TUF opposing coaches? 'The Diamond' said 'No thanks.' IMAGO | Louis Grasse/PxImages Louis Grasse

The idea of a rematch between Justin Gaethje and Dustin Poirier has been floated around as of late. There have been no developments, so far, but according to “The Highlight,” the UFC offered them something that Poirier rejected. 

Gaethje recently spent a day of golfing with UFC Hall-of-Famer Daniel Cormier where he spoke about that supposed proposition from the UFC brass. 

Gaethje explains why Dustin Poirier turned down TUF role

Gaethje told Cormier that the UFC offered him and Dustin Poirier to be opposing coaches in an upcoming season of The Ultimate Fighter. Traditionally, both coaches end up facing each other once the season ends. 

“The Diamond,” however, wasn’t on board with the idea, and Gaethje isn’t faulting him for saying no. 

“Before I signed the Fiziev fight, they asked me if I wanted to do the Ultimate Fighter against Poirier. And he said no,” Gaethje told Cormier.  

“I don’t blame him. Shit. I wouldn’t do it if I was him. He got that much money. What, you want to pay me $80,000 to go f—ng six weeks away from my family? No thanks.” 

Apart from being a full-time fighter, Dustin Poirier is a family man: a dedicated husband and father to his only daughter. 

“That’s why I fight,” Porier said during the UFC 264 countdown show. “Not only my daughter but my wife is an anchor, for sure, for me. I don’t think I would be as successful as I am business-wise or fight-wise. 

“If she wasn’t in my life at such a young age. And I just realize how much they mean to me and how happy I am when they are around. I need my girls, man.”

Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje agree on a rematch

They may have not agreed on a TUF coaching season, but make no mistake about it: these two bangers are on board for a part two. 

“It’s a fight that makes me nervous,” Poirier said of a Gaethje fight. “When I hear a name and I get nervous, it’s motivation. Those are the kind of fights that – same thing with Chandler. 

When I heard Chandler’s name, when they called me with Michael Chandler, I was nervous, because I knew the danger of those kinds of fights, and that’s what motivates me. 

“Same thing with Justin. If they do call me and he’s the name that they say, maybe it happens. We’ll see.”

“He’s No. 2, he has no dance partner, and the same with me,” Gaethje said of Poirier after the Rafael Fiziev fight. “I think that fight is certainly a title contention fight. The winner of [Charles] Oliveira and [Beneil] Dariush fight, obviously [they] are going to fight for the title in October, so I need to fight Dustin in August, September, or October to put me on that perfect timeline.

What happened in the first fight between Poirier and Gaethje?

Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje first faced each other when they headlined a UFC Fight Night card in 2018. It lived up to expectations of being a barnburner with both men taking home $50K bonuses apiece for Fight of the Night. 

However, it was “The Diamond” who ended up victorious via fourth-round TKO, dealing Gaethje his second straight loss at the time. 

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About the author
Milan Ordoñez
Milan Ordoñez

Milan Ordoñez has been covering combat sports since 2012 and has been part of the Bloody Elbow staff since 2016. He’s also competed in amateur mixed martial arts and submission grappling tournaments.

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