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Nate Diaz offers to fight Dustin Poirier in January, Poirier responds ‘I’m in’

MMA: UFC 266-Diaz vs Lawler Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Nate Diaz and Dustin Poirier appear ready to step into the octagon in January – or at least willing to go a few more rounds on Twitter.

On Wednesday, Poirier appeared on The MMA Hour and said that a fight with Diaz would interest him after a heartbreaking loss this past Saturday at UFC 269.

In response, Diaz proposed a showdown at the start of next year.

In a text to MMA Fighting, Poirier wrote, “I’m in” when asked about Diaz’s tweet. Then the former interim lightweight champ made his stance public, touching off a brief skirmish online.

Poirier and Diaz originally were scheduled to fight in 2018 at UFC 230, but the fight fell apart, and both fighters blamed each other for the cancellation; Diaz criticized Poirier for dropping out to address a longstanding hip injury, and Poirier countered that Diaz’s contract demands with the UFC scuttled the fight before it came to fruition.

The pair have repeatedly taken shots at each other over the years, though a fight has never materialized. Diaz recently targeted a return in January against a top-ranked opponent he deemed worthy – not making the cut was fast-rising star Khamzat Chimaev, whom he turned down.

The UFC’s January pay-per-view schedule currently includes UFC 270, which takes place Jan. 22 in Diaz’s home state of California However, the fight card currently is headlined by a pair of title bouts; a heavyweight title unifier between undisputed champ Francis Ngannou and interim titleholder Ciryl Gane, and a flyweight title rematch between champ Brandon Moreno and ex-champ Deiveson Figueiredo.

A bout between Poirier and Diaz would almost certainly occupy a headlining spot on PPV card. Recently, the Jan. 22 fight card was downsized by one bout when middleweights Derek Brunson and Jared Cannonier were moved to UFC 271.

Whether the tweets between Poirier and Diaz are just that – or something more serious –remains to be seen. Diaz has been linked to several fights and called out several opponents online, but his most recent appearance came in June at UFC 263, where he lost a unanimous decision to contender Leon Edwards and won a moral victory with a last-minute surge. The next fight on Diaz’s current UFC contract is reportedly his final obligation to the promotion.