A dominant performance like the one he put on against Ferguson has only strengthened the case for an eventual title shot for Oliveira, who is certain that the next time he steps into the Octagon will hopefully be for the lightweight championship. As for who he expects to stand across from, Oliveira has said he is paying very close attention to the upcoming rematch between Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier set to take place at UFC 257.
Although there are other names in the division that he could potentially fight such as current, but recently retired champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, Oliveira does not see him returning anytime soon so his focus is on a more viable option like the winner of McGregor and Poirier.
“Khabib swore on his father’s grave that he wasn’t going to come back, so when a man does that, I don’t think he’s going to come back,” said Oliveira during his post-fight press conference. [Justin] Gaethje can go fight whoever, but I want the winner of Conor and Poirier. I have eight wins in a row, seven of those I finish the fight and I don’t let it go to the judges’ hands. I finish fights and I deserve — I’m in the position to be fighting for the belt.”
Oliveira does not seem to be concerned about who he would face if he were to get the winner of McGregor and Poirier. He admits that more in terms of certain incentives come with fighting someone like McGregor, but it does not matter. He just wants to fight for the championship no matter what.
“I don’t really think there is a preference,” said Oliveira. “I want to fight for the belt. That’s been my dream and my team’s dream. Obviously fighting Conor involves a lot of other things, a lot of money and a lot of other things that maybe a fight with Dustin wouldn’t involve, but we really want to win the belt and it really doesn’t make a difference.
“What’s supposed to be mine is going to be mine. Nobody can take that away and I’m just slowly and steadily and surely getting there.”
Oliveira is more than ready to take on either man at this point, so it is only natural that he offered to serve as a potential backup for McGregor and Poirier. He did suffer a minor cut over his left eye in the fight against Ferguson, however it does not appear to be something that could keep him on the sidelines for long.
If the UFC wants him, then he is simply a phone call away from heading to Fight Island in January if necessary.
“I just have a cut over my eye, so next week I’ll be fine. I haven’t lost a fight since Paul Felder and I was in the gym a week after that. So, Dana [White] just call my manager if you want me to fill in.”