Poirier now sits at #5 in the UFC Lightweight Division rankings, with three fighters ahead of him being former UFC LIghtweight/Interim Lightweight Champions.
Gaethje's latest setback will leave him just shy of the lightweight title discussion and in an interview given to a media scrum after the fight (via MMAFighting), he made it clear that he can only see himself competing in the sport five more times.
While it may sound like a far-away possibility with Nurmagomedov seemingly headed for a vast grudge match with former champ Conor McGregor, UFC President Dana White was understandably complimentary of "The Diamond" when discussing the insane match-up at UFC on FOX 29 with Megan Olivi during the post-fight show on FOX Sports 2.
Gaethje attacked from the beginning, using the right hand and leg kicks to keep Poirier on the defensive counterattack.
Poirier, though, is a man whose own penchant for action could well rival anyone's and sure enough, when push came to shove, he was able to handle the heat and record a huge win for his title aspirations.
"I've been knocked out, climbed back, over and over again". I fight to entertain people.
Gaethje, 29, who has firmly established a reputation in three UFC fights for providing entertainment, also suffered his second straight defeat via violent knockout. I'm ready to go, and gold is next. "I was training, I knew I could be called at short notice".
Poirier added: "This guy [Gaethje] would have died in here if Herb Dean hadn't stopped it". Coming off two losses, that's hard to say, but you want to see me fight.
Poirier was still ahead on all three cards and left no doubt in the fourth round, stunning Gaethje with the left hand and burying him in a flurry of punches until Dean stepped in to stop it. Michelle Waterson opened the main card with a split-decision victory over Cortney Casey in a technical straw weight fight.