McGregor Focused on Defending UFC Title
After his boxing match with Floyd Mayweather, McGregor expressed a number of options for what could be next in his future. Recently, McGregor’s coach, John Kavanagh, expressed a desire to see a trilogy bout between McGregor and rival Nate Diaz.
Kavanagh’s expressed desires earned him some criticism throughout the MMA community, with some desiring for McGregor to face the winner of the UFC 216 interim lightweight title main event between Tony Ferguson and Kevin Lee. But either way, it seems the champion may be fixed on a title defense next.
Speaking to Caroline Pearce at An Evening with Conor McGregor at the SEC Armadillo in Glasgow, Scotland, McGregor talk of the importance of defending his UFC title and legitimizing his title run. McGregor has been criticized in the past for not defending his UFC title and pursuing “money fights.”
McGregor has not made a title defense of his UFC Lightweight Championship since winning it at UFC 205 in November 2016. In addition, McGregor never defended the UFC Featherweight Championship he won at UFC 194 in December 2015 before being stripped of the title a couple of weeks after UFC 205.
“I’ve already gone from the highest of the high in terms of a money fight. Now the question I always get is about defending the belt and legitimizing the sport and the rankings. Maybe now it would be a good time for me to go and do that and shut that side up.”
McGregor also talked about potential opponents for a title defense. While Diaz was brought up, McGregor did express concern he could “price himself out of the event.” McGregor said he’d keep a close eye on the interim title fight next week, but wonders if the bout will even occur at all.
An interim title fight between Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov, who has called out McGregor on a number of occasions in the past, was scheduled to take place at UFC 209 back in March. The bout was scrapped a day prior to the event due to weight-cutting issues by Nurmagomedov.
“In my head now, I’m very interested in seeing this fight this weekend and to see how the lightweight title picture pans out and to go in and correct that whole situation. That’s where my thoughts are.”
Original story: MMA Fighting