Conor McGregor has announced his return to take place on 18th January next year in Las Vegas. However, he did not reveal the opponent for his next fight. In the lightweight division, there are a few fights that make sense for the Notorious One. His rematch against Dustin Poirier and a fight with Justin Gaethje for the number one contender spot are on the top of that list.
Although Conor McGregor has been campaigning for a fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov in Moscow for a meaningful period Nurmagomedov has shown no interest in a rematch against McGregor. The lightweight champion believes McGregor has not done much to deserve another title shot. However, McGregor believes Nurmagomedov is afraid for a rematch. McGregor said:
“He(Khabib Nurmagomedov) is afraid of Moscow bout. I am not sure, does he represent Russia? I don’t think he represents Russia. I have never seen the man represent Russia in my life. Have you ever seen him raise the Russian flag like I raise the Irish flag with pride? He is running from the fight in Moscow. The public wants it, the people want it, his own father wants it, he doesn’t want it.”
Before UFC 242, Khabib Nurmagomedov called out former UFC welterweight and middleweight champion, George St Pierre for a super fight, but with one condition. The lightweight champion demanded George St Pierre come down to lightweight. George St Pierre has fought in welterweight for his entire MMA career before going up to middleweight to challenge Michael Bisping for the title.
Conor McGregor called out “coward” Khabib Nurmagomedov for asking GSP to come down to lightweight and said:
“He (Khabib Nurmagomedov) wants to bring a man down to in a weight he(GSP) never competed in before. Even though in that weight division he has himself died making that weight. He is afraid of risk.”
Conor McGregor also criticized Khabib Nurmagomedov’s title defense against Poirier saying:
“There is no longevity in his career as he does not take risk at all. His last opponent was a former featherweight which I knocked down that man in 90 seconds. It took him 3 rounds to get the job done. So this is an inevitable rematch, we know it’s happening. He can run and he does run. It is in the nature of the Dagestani man to run.”
Conor McGregor has claimed that a rematch with Khabib Nurmagomedov is “Inevitable”. However, after his return in January next year, the former lightweight champion is also willing to fight the winner of Nate Diaz and Jorge Masvidal for the BMF title.