White announces McGregor and Nurmagomedov will fight in UFC 229, in Las Vegas on October 6.
I wouldn’t say this is a crossroads fight. This is a very important fight for both fighters. For Khabib, who is undefeated and who is looked at as one of the best fighters in the world, beating Conor is massive for him. And obviously for Conor, coming back from a two-year layoff, in my opinion — and it’s crazy to say this because of how popular he is around the world — but he’s one of the most underrated fighters in the UFC. Everybody thinks because he speaks so well and gets so crazy and everything, it makes him sort of less of a fighter. It’s the weirdest thing I’ve ever seen…When you talk about pound-for-pound, best in the world? This is a guy who is actually living proof for pound-for-pound. He [McGregor] jumps from weight class to weight class and fights people in different weight classes.
Nurmagomedov’s team says their fighter will fight McGregor on October 6 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
The UFC reportedly wanted a lightweight tournament with Nurmagomedov fighting McGregor in the fall and St-Pierre vs Diaz in August, with the two winners facing off at the end of the year. The GSP-Diaz bought was cancelled due to GSP’s illness. St-Pierre:
I’m not ready to fight yet. I need to wait until all the symptoms of my ulcer stop. It’s much better than it was but it’s not 100 percent yet. If I try to return for a training camp for a fight it will amplify and go back to what it was in the beginning. I need to get over this first for my own health and safety.
The Nurmagomedov-McGregor bout is impacted by McGregor’s legal issues. However, Nurmagomedov’s camp has also been pushing for a match up with St-Pierre instead, which they call a “legacy” bout.
White announces that Ferguson will fight Nurmagomedov for the interim lightweight title at UFC 209 on March 4. At one point Nurmagomedov vs. Ferguson seemed as if it was off the table, with Nurmagomedov claiming he was moving on from Ferguson who — according to White — was asking for too much money. It’s understood that Ferguson and the promotion came to a middle ground.
According to reports, Nurmagomedov vs. Ferguson’s interim-UFC lightweight title bout is “90%” complete.