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Morning Report: Nate Diaz, Dustin Poirier say they’re fighting for new 165-pound title in UFC 230 main event

Nate Diaz clowns around at the UFC 202 press conference Thursday in Las Vegas.
Nate Diaz clowns around at the UFC 202 press conference Thursday in Las Vegas.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Last year, the Association of Boxing Commissions approved the addition of four new weight classes to MMA - 165 pounds, 175 pounds, 195 pounds, and 225 pounds. Since then, the idea of adding these weight classes, particularly a 165-pound division, has gathered steam with the fighters who claim that making the cut to 155 pounds is too taxing on their bodies but feel disadvantaged competing at 170 pounds. Now, it looks like two of the UFC’s biggest assets are trying to will that into existence.

On Thursday, in response to rumors that the UFC was searching for a main event to headline their return to Madison Square Garden at UFC 230, and were even considering creating an interim title because no champion could step in, UFC lightweight Dustin Poirier stepped in to offer up this possibility.

Poirier and Diaz are set to face each other in the co-main event of UFC 230 in a bout that may well serve as a number one contender’s bout for the winner of the Khabib Nurmagomedov-Conor McGregor fight that will go down at UFC 229. Diaz seemingly liked Poirier’s idea because he picked up the ball and went ahead and announced that their fight would be for the first 165-pound championship.

Not long after, Poirier jumped on the bandwagon.

Unfortunately for both fighters, UFC President Dana White has yet to sign off on the idea and, according to reports, has no intention of doing so.

Of course, Diaz and Poirier do not need the UFC to create a 165-pound title. As they both are seemingly attempting to force the UFC’s hand in the issue, the two could come to a gentleman’s agreement about their weigh-in and then compete for their own belt. It wouldn’t stand as the official UFC 165-pound title, but since the UFC has no 165 division anyway, there would be no official champion to dispute the belt.

Of course, this all could be totally legit. After all, Dana White has a history of saying things that end up being incorrect.


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Here’s Nate from a few years ago on the subject.

Other fighters like the idea.




I'd like to thank you all for making the last ten years of my life an epic journey,, but now it's time to give my time...

Posted by Mark Godbeer on Tuesday, September 25, 2018


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A post shared by Donald Cerrone (@cowboycerrone) on

I need a Khabib-DC buddy cop show.


Abusupiyan Magomedov (21-3) vs. Gasan Umalatov (18-6-1); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Bruno Santos (18-2) vs. Sadibou Sy (7-3); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Shamil Gamzatov (13-0) vs. John Howard (26-14); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Louis Taylor (16-4) vs. Rex Harris (11-4); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Ray Cooper III (15-5) vs. Jake Shields (33-10-1); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Rick Story (15-5) vs. Handesson Ferreira (12-1-1); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Magomed Magomedkerimov (20-5) vs. Pavel Kusch (23-6); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Joao Zeferino (23-9) vs. Bojan Velickovic (16-7-1); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Andre Lobato (24-9) vs. Eddie Gordon (8-6); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Abubakar Nurmagomedov (15-2) vs. Yuri Villefort (11-7); PFL 10, Oct. 20.

Carlos Condit (30-12) vs. Michael Chiesa (14-4); UFC 232, Dec. 29.


2003: Randy Couture became the UFC light heavyweight champion when he stopped Tito Ortiz at UFC 44. In the co-main event, Tim Sylvia knocked out Gan McGee to retain his heavyweight title. Sylvia was later stripped for failing a post-fight drug test.


First of all, I’d like to reiterate that this is all absurd. Look at all those fighters essentially saying “It is extremely hard to cut to 155 but the 5-pound difference between 165 and 170 is far too much. I’ll never be able to compete.” The weight cutting culture is a plague that has rotted the minds of so many fighters. Look at Daniel Cormier, T.J. Dillashaw, and Robert Whittaker. They thrive competing with light weight cuts.

Second, If the UFC really does add a 165-pound weight class, I damn sure hope they move 170 up to 175. Also, controversial opinion, but if they do make 170 into 175, Woodley should be the last 170-pound champion and the 175 belt should not be awarded to him. Not that he isn’t a great champion - he is - but he is the champion of a 170 pounds. If we’ve accepted the fighters premise that we need a 165 weight class because 5 pounds is too much to overcome, then the logical conclusion to that is that Woodley’s wins at 170 shouldn’t have any bearing on a 175-pound championship.

Third, I hope Nate and Dustin make up their own belt. If Nate and Dustin bring a belt to the cage, it feels like most fighters would sort of accept that as the de facto 165-pound belt and then try to fight the winner. There’s a genuine opportunity for them to force the UFC’s hand - the same way Eddie should have created the “Most Violent” title and run with that. Just my two cents.

Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.



Would you like to see the UFC implement a 165 pound weight class?

This poll is closed

  • 79%
    Yes, if they move 170 to 175.
    (1871 votes)
  • 6%
    Yes, but keep 170.
    (147 votes)
  • 14%
    (340 votes)
2358 votes total Vote Now

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