It looks like Jorge Masvidal’s time as the reigning BMF champ has come to an end. Gamebred won his gimmick belt back in 2019, with a TKO (via doctor’s stoppage) over Nate Diaz at UFC 244. Despite losing his next four fights straight, the title of UFC’s ‘Baddest Mother F-cker’ never left his grasp. At least, not until now.
It seems with Masvidal’s recently announced retirement the UFC has decided to reclaim the belt and bestow it anew. To make the move official, they’ve booked a top quality lightweight war for the UFC 291 main event. The promotion announced the move in a press release, noting that Gaethje & Poirier would be fighting for the “vacant BMF title.”
UFC books Dustin Poirier vs. Justin Gaethje 2 for UFC 291
Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje first met back in 2018 at a UFC on FOX event. Even at the time, their contest was a highly anticipated battle of all-action fighters that had fans salivating. Poirier stepped into that first fight fresh off a third round submission of former lightweight champion Anthony Pettis. For the ‘Highlight’ the booking against the ‘Diamond’ was just his third trip to the Octagon after leaving the World Series of fighting.
Gaethje was unfortunately bouncing back from the first loss of his career, a knockout at the hands (knee) of Eddie Alvarez at UFC 218. Nonetheless, he was all set to go to war just a little over four months later, taking Poirier three hard rounds before succumbing to a TKO via strikes in the fourth. That was the last knockout loss of Gaethje’s career.
In the time since, the Elevation Fight Team product has put together at strong 6-2 record in the Octagon, wiht victories over Michael Chandler, Tony Ferguson, Donald Cerrone, and Edson Barboza. Most recently he beat top rising contender Rafael Fiziev at UFC 286 to maintain his own spot among the lightweight elite.
Much like Gaethje, Poirier’s time after their first meeting has seen a whole lot of success (although both men lost title shots to both Khabib Nurmagomedov and Charles Oliveira). Poirier snagged victories over Eddie Alvarez, Max Holloway, and a pair of wins over Conor McGregor. The 34-year-old is currently fresh off a third round submission win over Michael Chandler at UFC 281 last November.
When are they fighting
UFC 291 is set to take place on July 29th at the Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah. The BMF title fight between Gaethje and Poirier is expected to serve as the card’s five round main event. Alongside the headlining fight, Dana White has announced that the card will also include Jan Blachowicz taking on Alex Pereira in Pereira’s debut at 205 lbs, as well as Paulo Costa’s return to action against Ikram Aliskerov. Tony Ferguson vs. Bobby Green and Michael Chiesa vs. Kevin Holland have also been announced for the event.
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