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Poirier reportedly turned down Michael Chandler fight due to ‘loyalty’ to Tony Ferguson

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Dustin Poirier is reported to have turned down a fight against Michael Chandler at UFC 254.

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UFC fan favorite Dustin Poirier is reported to have turned down a late replacement fight against Michael Chandler at UFC 254 due to ‘loyalty’ to Tony Ferguson, ESPN’s Ariel Helwani revealed on Thursday.

“According to sources, UFC offered Dustin Poirier the Michael Chandler fight yesterday but they couldn’t come to terms. One issue was the same as before - pay - but also sources say DP wanted to show the same loyalty to Tony Ferguson, who advocated for him both publicly/privately.”

Chandler, a former three-time Bellator lightweight champion, signed with the UFC earlier this week and is expected to serve as a backup for the highly anticipated UFC 254 main event between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Justin Gaethje.

Poirier was expected to fight Ferguson in the co-main event but ‘The Diamond’ couldn’t reach a financial agreement with the UFC. The Louisianan wants to be treated as a ‘prize fighter’ before he accepts any more high profile matchups. Ferguson, the former interim lightweight champion, agrees that the UFC should pay Poirier his worth.

UFC 254: Khabib vs. Gaethje is scheduled to take place next month, Oct. 24 at UFC Fight Island in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.