REVEALED: We came very close to seeing Urijah Faber vs. Conor McGregor at UFC 196
We very nearly saw the usual coaches' fight at the end of The Ultimate Fighter Season 22, five months after shooting wrapped.
It's emerged that Urijah Faber was offered and accepted a lightweight bout with Conor McGregor at UFC 196 after Rafael dos Anjos withdrew from the main event with a fractured foot.
Faber, who competes in the UFC's bantamweight division, claimed that he was on the shortlist of fighters who the promotion wanted to step in on short notice and that he took the fight on just eleven days' notice.
"Dana called me and offered me the fight," Faber told Yahoo Sports. "He said I was who he is pushing for. I accepted [but] Conor ended up wanting Diaz. I was ready. Lean at 158 [pounds]."
Faber and McGregor have a rivalry dating back to last July when they clashed ahead of the weigh-ins for UFC 189 and which led to the pair coaching opposite one another on the latest season of The Ultimate Fighter.
And although he would have been the much smaller and less prepared fighter on the night, Faber still fancied his chances against 'The Notorious.'
"He looked friggin' huge," Faber said of McGregor. "I would have been at a big disadvantage, but would have had to use speed and grappling. [It would have been an] uphill battle, but I don't care."