The Dustin Poirier and Tony Ferguson saga doesn’t look like it’s going to have a happy ending.
The pair had tentatively agreed to fight at UFC 254 in October, but Poitier has since said he wanted more money from UFC and Dana White essentially told him “No”.
As a result, The Diamond pulled out of the fight and UFC has been left scrambling to find El Cucuy a suitable opponent.
Things got more confusing when Ferguson implored White to pay Poirier what he wants and Poirier tweeted his appreciation for Ferguson’s support.
However, the brief union of the fighters did not move White.
In fact, the UFC president believes there may be an ulterior motive for Poirier pulling out of the fight.
“Listen, I like Dustin,” White told reporters, including MMA Junkie, at the Dana White’s Contender Series 33 post-fight news conference on Tuesday. “I’m not going to sit up here and say anything negative about Dustin, he’s a great kid.
“I don’t know if it was he didn’t want to fight in Abu Dhabi or what his deal was – he didn’t want to fight.
“Listen, there’s a lot of different ways to turn down a fight.
“Negotiating yourself out of one is one of the ways you can do it. So for whatever reason, he didn’t want to take this fight. Only he knows that.”
When MMA Junkie asked Poirier for his response to those claims, Poirier denied what White was implying.
“I do want that fight,” Poirier wrote via text message. “Simple and plain, I want to fight Tony. I like the match-up.”
From White and UFC’s perspective, they have already lined up another opponent for Ferguson and they fully expect him to accept.
“I told you we’ve got a fight,” White said. “I don’t see Tony not accepting the fight.”
This will of course be on the same card as Justin Gaethje and Khabib Nurmagomedov going at it for the lightweight title, the former of which defeated Ferguson last time out to get his shot.
There doesn’t seem to be any bad blood between Poirier and White and the former isn’t the first to request more money, but the self-proclaimed prizefighter may well be reducing his value.