Ahead of UFC 202, where Conor McGregor ultimately ended up avenging his UFC 196 submission loss to Nate Diaz, UFC President Dana White stated that after the fight McGregor must defend his featherweight title, or be forced to vacate it.
Immediately following the fight, McGregor was asked at the UFC 202 post-fight press conference if he would be returning to featherweight for a title unification fight with Jose Aldo. McGregor remained noncommittal about returning to featherweight, explaining that the first time he was slated to face Aldo, Aldo backed out; and when they did fight, he won in 13 seconds.
With the announcement that McGregor would be moving to lightweight to fight Eddie Alvarez in the main event of UFC 205 for the lightweight championship, many, including Jose Aldo, were outraged that McGregor wasn’t forced to give up the featherweight strap.
UFC President Dana White attempted to calm the situation by stating that if McGregor wins he must vacate one of the title belts. That wasn’t enough however to stop Jose Aldo from requesting a release from the UFC, and even going as far as to state that he plans to retire from MMA.
During the UFC 205 press conference, McGregor was asked about potentially vacating one of the belts if he leaves The Empire State victorious. To which he replied:
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“They’re going to have to gather an army to try and take one of them (belts) off me, and that’s out straight,” McGregor said Tuesday at the raucous UFC 205 kickoff press conference in Madison Square Garden. “One’s going to be there, one’s going to be there, and I’m going to be picking and choosing who I want to destroy next. And that’s it.”
“I’m going to wrap one (belt) on one shoulder, and I’m going to wrap the other on the other shoulder, and they’re going to need a f*cking army to come take them belts off me,”
“I’m very happy with the 155-pound weight limit. I feel of all the divisions I’ve ran around and ran through, 155, I feel, will be the one where I take over the most. So, I look forward to that.”