Former UFC featherweight and lightweight champion Conor McGregor promised that he’d be active during his 2020 “season” while he was preparing for his return at UFC 246 in January, and then the COVID-19 pandemic changed everything.
McGregor had a successful return to the Octagon when he defeated Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone with a 40-second first-round TKO victory and immediately jumped back into the conversation for big fights in 2020. With the UFC having to shuffle events and matchups due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s uncertainty around many of the superstars in the sport including McGregor.
On Tuesday, UFC President Dana White provided an update on the status of McGregor during an interview with “The Jim Rome Show” on CBS Sports. White revealed that McGregor is ready for his return whenever that may be.
“Conor’s been ready to fight for a while. He’s in shape and he’s ready to go.”
White would continue on to say that there is a possibility “The Notorious” will fight on Fight Island, which is a real venue for upcoming events according to the UFC President. White added there will be a big financial loss to having McGregor fight without fans at the event.
“First of all ‘Fight Island’ is going to be very important in any of these fights that are happening with people from outside the country. It kills me to do a fight with Conor without fans. Kills me. this guy’s doing almost $20 million gates” (H/T MMA Fighting)
With UFC 249 approaching and an interim lightweight title on the line between Tony Ferguson and Justin Gaethje, with the winner set to meet champion Khabib Nurmagomedov later this year, there will have to be other plans for McGregor’s next fight, and he could make another appearance in the welterweight division.
After saying there could be other options for ‘BMF’ champion Jorge Masvidal, White would reveal there is a possibility that Masvidal would face Conor McGregor on ‘Fight Island’ but nothing has been confirmed at this time.
Returning to fighting without fans would take away some of the allure of a McGregor fight, but Dana White believes the former two-weight champion will be back whenever there is a planned opponent in place.