An Inside Look during a UFC’s Plan for Conor McGregor and a Lightweight Title

John Locher/Associated Press

The UFC reason a press discussion Jan 19, and it was a uncanny one.

The thought was to foster and plead April’s UFC 223 quarrel label in Brooklyn, New York. At one point, a graduation brought out halt lightweight champion Tony Ferguson and challenger Khabib Nurmagomedov. 

These press conferences tend to follow a routine. There’s a video during a commencement hyping one or dual pivotal fights. UFC President Dana White comes out and yells during a crowd, seeking how everyone’s doing. They’re doing utterly fine, they scream back, and afterwards White brings out a fighters concerned in a tip bouts. The media ask questions; a fighters give answers. 

Every once in a while, you’ll get some interesting chaff between opponents, quite if there’s some pre-existing bad blood between them. 

White eventually calls for one final question. After a bit, a fighters face off for photos. Usually, all during a presser goes according to plan. 

But this one? This one was different.

And it’s all given of a Irish elephant in a room.

Conor McGregor is a UFC lightweight champion. He has been given he kick Eddie Alvarez during UFC 205 in Nov 2016. But McGregor is out of a design now, and he might never come back. That is since it done clarity when White, responding to a media doubt during a press conference, pronounced that Ferguson and Nurmagomedov were fighting for a tangible lightweight pretension and not a halt pretension Ferguson holds.

So did this meant McGregor was being nude of a belt?

Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

No. White pronounced McGregor is still a lightweight champion.

So Ferguson and Nurmagomedov are fighting for a interim—not a real—UFC lightweight title?

No, White said. They’re fighting for a genuine belt.

How are Ferguson and Nurmagomedov confronting off for a tangible lightweight pretension when McGregor still binds it? Will there be dual UFC lightweight champions? White gave no answers, and all of us who watched a press discussion were left confused.


McGregor’s arise to a tip of churned martial humanities has regularly pushed a UFC’s executive group into uncharted waters. He has ordered rare quarrel pay, leisure and extracurricular options. Five years ago, it was a unfamiliar idea that a warrior would be authorised to contest outward a UFC. So too was a judgment of a warrior publicly blustering a classification in a approach McGregor has and removing divided with it.

McGregor is a special case, obviously, yet his actions have privileged a approach for others to do a same thing. He has altered a diversion for others to exam a boundary of energy and to be outspoken in situations they are unfortunate with. Still, some of a aged opinion remains, quite with White.

A print posted by Conor McGregor Official (@thenotoriousmma)

While McGregor is authorised to reason a multiplication warrant but being nude of a championship, others are not afforded a same opportunity. (He did a same thing with a featherweight multiplication for scarcely a year before he was stripped, as it was transparent he had 0 intentions of returning to a weight class.)

Germaine de Randamie, a UFC’s initial featherweight women’s champion, was nude of her belt in a blink of an eye after she balked during fighting a UFC’s selected featherweight project, Cris “Cyborg” Justino. White had no issues blustering former middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre, radically job him a doormat who did not wish to quarrel a best his new multiplication offered.

McGregor has some-more energy than a rest of a register combined, though.

According to a source with a promotion, UFC executives are wavering to frame McGregor of his pretension until a quarrel between Ferguson and Nurmagomedov happens. After all, a UFC has attempted mixed times to book this scintillating matchup; any time it has depressed through, mostly given of injuries.

With a story like that, it is no consternation a promotion’s coronet see no reason to annoy McGregor. It would be a UFC’s fitness to frame McGregor of a belt, usually to see a quarrel for a other “real” belt tumble through, withdrawal it even serve on a outs with a biggest star. After all, a Irishman does not seem prone to lapse after hauling in over $100 million opposite Floyd Mayweather Jr. in August.

With McGregor’s lapse to a UFC looking reduction expected with any flitting day, a association has a devise for relocating forward, both with a lightweight multiplication and a McGregor-less graduation as a whole. Once a quarrel between Ferguson and Nurmagomedov indeed takes place, a UFC intends to frame McGregor of a championship, with an proclamation expected entrance on a UFC 223 pay-per-view promote Apr 7.

Though it’s convoluted, it creates a certain kind of sense. Or, during least, it creates a lot some-more clarity than carrying dual “real” lightweight champions, given that creates no clarity during all.

McGregor doesn’t need to quarrel again; supposing he doesn’t continue spending outrageously, he and destiny generations of his family are financially set for life. And for McGregor, a male who has damaged norms and charted new domain with any step he has taken, returning to a same-old understanding during a UFC would be a vital step backward.

And if we know anything about McGregor, we know that a step back is unthinkable.

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