Dana White confirms Conor McGregor is not in the USADA testing pool
"Yeah, yeah, yeah... he's... right."
UFC president Dana White had previously skirted the Conor McGregor testing queries, but he provided some clarity after UFC 280.
'The Notorious' has not competed since July 2021, when he broke his leg in a rematch with Dustin Poirier, in Las Vegas. McGregor was seeking to avenge a loss to Poirier, earlier that year, when he snapped his leg and could not continue the bout.
While the 34-year-old has remained vocal on the sport, and insisted he is still capable of setting the MMA world to rights, he has not been in any serious match-up talk for some time. One of his big upcoming projects is set to be a cameo role in the movie re-make of the Patrick Swayze classic, Road House.
It was recently noted that McGregor had not been drug-tested by the US Anti-Doping Agency [USADA]. All fighters on the UFC roster must have been tested at least once inside a six-month window if they wish to compete in the promotion. Now that McGregor has dropped outside that testing window, it now means he is at least six months away from a comeback, if indeed he ever makes a return to The Octagon.
During a press conference after UFC 280 concluded, in Abu Dhabi, Dana White came onto the topic of USADA and testing windows when he mentioned that former flyweight champion Henry Cujedo was getting regular tests again and could return in the coming months.
Reporter, Farah Hannoun then asked if McGregor would 'have to complete six months [of testing] before he could compete. "Yeah, yeah, yeah," White replied.
Asked if McGregor could not then return for at least six months, and after regular testing over that period, White replied, "Right."
Conor McGregor weighs in on new lightweight champ
Although he is coming up on 18 months out of the UFC, Conor McGregor remains a student, and fan of, the sport.
He tuned into the broadcast of the promotion's latest Pay-Per-View and took to Twitter, after the main event, to suggest he would defeat newly crowned lightweight champion Islam Makhachev were he ever to return.
'Nice fight. nice performance,” McGregor wrote. 'I have built all the tools to beat this style now versus before. Experience vs. s***. Face breaking shots from clinch and baby brain batter shots from bottom. And the rest of my repertoire yous know. Steel left leg. Cannon back hand. Wrist control.
'The thought of shutting down this system of fighting with my own developed system is quite intriguing to me. Whoever of them against. It’s not personal. It’s a skill evaluation and a fight. Even through generations. The [IMMAF’s], amateurs. A war of attrition. To the box.'
The former feather- and lightweight champion also took a cut off Khabib Nurmagomedov, who coaches Makhechev, and told him he was going against the wishes of his father - now deceased - for running away from fights.
Then, not for the first time in his long run on social media, McGregor deleted said tweets.
Makhachev wins lightweight belt as Sterling retains title
Islam Makhachev has been a runaway train in recent years, as he steamed towards a shot at the UFC lightweight belt. Once he reached that face-off for the 155lbs strap, he made short work of recently stripped champion Charles 'Do Bronx' Oliveira to claim the vacant strap.
Also on the night, at UFC 280, Aljamain Sterling had a TKO win over TJ Dillashaw, who twice fight on after popping his shoulder out in their co-main event.
Beneil Dariush and Manon Fiorot kicked off the main card with two decision victories, while 'Suga' Sean O'Malley had a split decision win over a disgusted Petr Yan.