Helwani says that Mayweather-McGregor is moving into an “exploratory phase”.
An Experience With Conor McGregor announces that Helwani will host and interview McGregor at the event at Event City in Manchester on Jan 28.
Kavanagh thanks The MMA Hour and Helwani for awarding him the Coach of the Year in a Twitter video that goes awry at the end, as he falls off a Hoverboard.
Thank you so much for this great honour. I know the competition was tough after such a big year in MMA. I want you to know that winning these awards hasn’t changed anything for us — we’re still just a small humble team from Ireland.
In an interview with Helwani, Aldo talks about McGregor’s claim to be the real featherweight champ.
First of all, I never stopped being the champion. When I lost to Conor, he should have rematched me right away. Like I’ve always said and done, the champion is the guy who defends the belt against all challengers. Guys who run from title defenses are not champions. All Conor did was he beat the champion. But he never did what he had to do to become the champion. He’s never been the champion of the featherweight division…He’s two-faced. He says a lot of stuff to the press, but behind-the-scenes, he turns down fights left and right. He picks opponents, he picks events. He’s not willing to face challengers the way a champion should be ready to face challengers. That’s not a true champion. He spent a year without defending the belt, so his math doesn’t add up when he says, I was the champion for less than 12 months. He wasn’t the champion at all. He never defended the belt. He wanted to stall an entire division. That’s not being a champion. I’ve never seen Conor as the featherweight champion. He’s not the champion now. I’ve never stopped being the featherweight champion. I went to bed one night believing the UFC was going to announce my rematch with Conor McGregor and I woke up to read the news that they booked Eddie Alvarez instead. My conversations with the UFC were, ‘It’s happening. We’re booking it.’ And then literally overnight something changed without my participation. The bottom line is, Conor doesn’t want to fight me. There’s nothing else I can do. I don’t think there’s anything else the UFC can do. If he keeps saying no and keeps running away, he’s going to keep running away. He’s a clown.
On The MMA Hour Helwani criticises the UFC’s handling of the removal of McGregor’s belt.
They botched it. They botched it epically. They botched it because if you’re going to go ahead and strip Conor, then Holloway /Pettis needs to be for the real belt, and you say to Jose Aldo that you’re getting the first crack at the champion of this interim title, you’ve been talking about retirement, you’ve been talking about not fighting again, you’ve been talking about throwing fights, we don’t know the state of your career is, so we’re making Holloway/Pettis the real championship fight, because we just stripped the biggest draw and the biggest star of his belt. It’s a disservice to Holloway and Pettis, who are going to have an amazing fight in a couple of weeks, it’s a disservice to Jose Aldo, and it’s a disservice to Conor McGregor.
Helwani reports that the UFC wants Pettis to fight Holloway for the interim 145 pound title in December in Toronto. This would be the main card fight after the Daniel Cornier-Anthony Johnson fight was cancelled due to injury. This means that the organisation will strip McGregor of his featherweight belt, reinstating it to Jose Aldo.
Kavanagh appears on MMA Live with Helwani to talk about UFC 205. On McGregor’s baby announcement.
People always roll their eyes when I say this, but Conor is an extremely private person. Of course he has the promotion side of fights. But [try to] find pictures of him when there’s no fights going on. He doesn’t really go out. He doesn’t have a massive friend circle. Most of the time it’s just him and Dee together.
Alvarez says he did not ask for too much money in negotiations with McGregor.
Adding to the reports, MMAFighting’s Helwani says that Alvarez did not even receive an offer to fight McGregor