Ahead of their UFC 269 main event this weekend, reigning lightweight champion, Charles Oliveira and incoming title challenger, Dustin Poirier shared a rather tense, yet genial face-off at the pre-fight press conference for the promotion’s final flagship event of this year.
Oliveira, the reigning undisputed lightweight kingpin, attempts to make his first defense of that crown on Saturday at the T-Mobile Arena – in a bid to also extend his division-best undefeated run to 10 straight fights.
The Sao Paulo technician scooped vacant lightweight spoils back in May at UFC 262 – stopping former three-time Bellator lightweight titleholder, Michael Chandler with a stunning early second round knockout in a rallying effort.
For Poirier, the Lafayette puncher enters his second undisputed lightweight title tilt in the midst of a three-fight winning run – including a rematch and subsequent rubber match triumph against former two-weight titleholder, Conor McGregor this year.
The former interim lightweight champion enters Saturday’s bout as a slight betting favorite over his divisional counterpart – currently sitting at -145 as champion Oliveira sits at +125.
At last night’s press conference from the famed MGM Grand Garden Arena, Oliveira and Poirier were majorly confident of each other’s ability and rise to their current stardom in the sport and division, with both receiving positive ovations.
However, less could be said in regards to cordiality between the event’s co-headliner, two-weight champion, Amanda Nunes and brash contender, Julianna Pena – as the two continually compared past experience with common-opponents, Sara McMann, and Cat Zingano – as Nunes bickered with the contender regarding her chances of scooping her bantamweight title.
Former bantamweight champion, Cody Garbrandt makes his flyweight division bow on Saturday against City Kickboxing striker, Kai Kara-France, however, beyond a smattering of verbals between the two during their face-off – Garbrandt and the outspoken, Sean O’Malley spent their time exchanging insults throughout. And even attempted to face-off during the presser before they were corralled by promotion officials.
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