UFC President Dana White spoke to Aaron Bronsteter and plunged deep into the current landscape of MMA. The long-time boss of the company provided some insight into the rapidly developing narrative surrounding UFC 254 set for October 24. UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov will put his gold strap on the line against Justin Gaethje in the headlining feature.
What’s more, the co-main event was to see another highly anticipated match-up between Tony Ferguson and Dustin Poirier. However, it wasn’t meant to be, as Poirier declined the fight on the grounds of contractual disputes with the company. Additionally, Tony Ferguson, who was to be the back-up fighter for the main event, is also removed from consideration.
However, it came out that newly signed lightweight Michael Chandler is now confirmed to be the standby replacement. Chandler has been one of the most talked-about free-agents in recent memory and has capitalized on this exposure.
Dana White speaks out
White touched upon a latent question that is on the fans’ and media members’ minds regarding the aforementioned situation. Chiefly, the reasoning behind Ferguson’s removal as a back-up at UFC 254 is largely unknown to the fans.
“They went quiet on us,” White told TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter on Thursday. “We couldn’t get a fight done. When I call you and you want to fight (then) fight,” White said. “If you don’t, no problem. I’m not pushing anybody to fight.… You don’t want to fight? We move on, and we make other fights.”
Moreover, fans were hoping to see Tony in a position to actualize a unified lightweight title fight. He has been unable to secure a fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov despite various attempts, and yet another has seemingly slipped. The general consensus was that ‘El Cucuy‘ could slide into the main event slot in the event of an unfortunate occurrence.
Michael Chandler will be keen to make the most out of the opportunity that has been afforded to him by the UFC. His stock is at an all-time high and he will look to enter into the books of the casual UFC audience. Additionally, the opportunity to fight high-level lightweights from the get-go works well with his own career projection.
Also Watch: Tony Ferguson-Top 5 Finishes
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