Following the withdrawal of Joe Duffy from UFC Fight Night 76, it turns out Dustin Poirier could have remained on the card, but “The Diamond” has outlined why he didn’t do so…
Duffy had to pull out from Saturday’s main event, after he incurred a concussion while training this past weekend. After the UFC announced the fight’s cancellation, it confirmed the flyweight bout between Louis Smolka and Patrick Holohan will headline. It turns out, however, that Norman Parke offered to fight Poirier.
Poirier recently spoke to MMA Junkie.com, and while discussing this week’s disappointing, turn of events, the lightweight relayed:
“It just really sucks – I’ve been preparing the past 10 weeks for this fight, and everything was going right on track,” Poirier said. “Duffy’s been in my crosshairs. They did offer me Norman Parke. They said, ‘Hey, Norman Parke will fight you.’ I was going back and forth … but they needed a decision right now, so I sat back with my coaches and talked to my coaches. They said if we can get the fight rescheduled, let’s just do that. We want the guy we’ve been preparing for.”
“…This is a business. I’m a professional athlete. This isn’t, ‘poke somebody and start a street fight.’ I was contracted to fight a guy who I prepared for, and it didn’t happen. Now we’re not just going to scramble and pick a guy and fight.
Now, not surprisingly, Poirier is getting piled on by critics, who say he should have fought Parke. But, really, Poirier’s right–this is a business, and he shouldn’t have to face a completely different opponent on days notice if he doesn’t want to. It’s also worth pointing out that Poirier agreed to fight Duffy–a rising and dangerous lightweight–in his own backyard of Dublin. So clearly the ATT fighter isn’t short on guts.
Duffy-Poirier had the makings of being a pretty sweet fight, so hopefully it gets rebooked soon.
Parke, meanwhile, is scheduled to fight Reza Madai at UFC FN 76.