Dana White wants McGregor v Khabib rematch - Conor only has one venue in mind 5 months ago

Dana White wants McGregor v Khabib rematch - Conor only has one venue in mind

Dana White doesn't want to talk about Jorge Masvidal. Why would he when he can talk about Conor McGregor v Khabib Nurmagomedov?

The cynic in you would say he can't see past the dollar signs but he'd be doing a bad job if he kept looking past them.

He has a generational fight on his hands, he has a superstar he likened to Mike Tyson and even Muhammad Ali so he's going to put him front and centre at every opportunity.

So after McGregor's 40-second destruction of Cowboy Cerrone, the president of the UFC had only one fight on his mind.

KHABIB v CONOR II

For Dana White, it's the only fight that makes sense.

McGregor has predicted that the Nurmagomedov v Tony Ferguson fight won't take place and has said he'd be willing to fill in when Ferguson pulls out. White, obviously, said he'd be up for that but he thinks the rematch is going to happen one way or another.

And definitely ahead of a potential bout with Jorge Masvidal.

"Going into the Khabib fight, Conor had lots of personal stuff going on - a lot self-inflicted - and he had injuries," Dana White said in the UFC press conference.

"He has been obsessed with getting that rematch because he knows he wasn't 100 per cent right.

"We're looking at Ali/Foreman or Ali/Frazier. This is a massive fight with global appeal. It's the fight that you make. It's the fight that makes sense. 

"For the 155lb title.

"If Conor and Masvidal fight, none of them even have a title."

After McGregor's first win since 2016, he's the money fight again and that draws out the money-grabbers, like Floyd Money Mayweather.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B7fa2HRl3aI/

Of course, Mayweather doesn't really care who he fights. As long as he gets paid.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B7ffIjhlUmP/

White confirmed that the UFC have been in talks with Mayweather and suggested that another fight with McGregor will be in the making at some stage but, for now, he's hell-bent on ensuring the Khabib rematch happens. Wherever it has to happen.

Venue

Dana White was open to all possibilities and he went through them.

  • Dallas Cowboys
  • Wembley
  • Millennium Stadium, Cardiff
  • Maddison Square Garden
  • The 02, London

Three of the venues discussed for the Nurmagomedov v McGregor rematch are situated in the UK and White was explicit when he said it would not be taking place in Russia.

"Nope, it ain't happening in Moscow," he said.

"I think the Khabib/Conor fight could take place anywhere.

"Unfortunately, Khabib is not a big Vegas fan. We have to sit down and look at what makes most sense."

Of course, McGregor was wondering where the talk of those three UK venues were coming from when Croke Park in Dublin is an 82,000-seater stadium with a bigger pitch than Wembley.

"If there's a stadium show happening in Europe, it's happening in Ireland," McGregor said.

White did stress that he would be keen to diffuse the rivalry between both camps, if a rematch was to happen. He said it's something that the company would need to control and ensure there are no repeats but also that the build-up isn't as hate-fuelled as it was the last time.

"I think he was a lot happier," he said of McGregor.

"What I saw this week was a guy who was happy and re-energised and happy to be here and back in the Octagon.

"When the whole Khabib/Conor press conference was happening, I was thinking this is super weird. It was really dark. 

"The hard part is when you have two guys who truly hate each other. The camps hate each other - there's a lot of bad blood there."