UFC Featherweight Champion Conor McGregor will fight UFC Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez in the main event at the first-ever UFC event in the state of New York on November 12. McGregor is looking to become the first UFC fighter to hold belts in two different weight classes when he takes on Alvarez at Madison Square Garden in the main event at UFC 205.
McGregor is by far the biggest male star in the UFC and has a huge following around the world, especially in his native country of Ireland. His brash and arrogant personality is exactly what the UFC needs to help promote fights, and Conor is the best promoter in the sport. Unfortunately, this may be the last time we see McGregor promote a fight for a while.
Speaking to WFAN’s Outside the Cage, UFC president Dana White had some interesting comments about Conor McGregor’s future.
“I promise… It’s completely… It’s something completely out of left field. It’s Conor’s business, it’s not mine, and I’ll let Conor announce it when he’s ready to.”
In a separate appearance on ESPN, White revealed that if McGregor defeats Alvarez at UFC 205, he will be giving up one of the belts.
“This fight’s coming up, and he wants to try to gain both belts. He will give up one of the titles after that fight in New York. He’s got some stuff going on right now. Some personal stuff that I’m sure he’ll announce when he’s ready, but this fight made sense.”
What could this personal news be? According to SmackHisFace.com, Conor McGregor will be walking away from MMA following his fight with Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205.
— BroBible (@BroBible) October 5, 2016
The report states that some of McGregor’s teammates at SBG Ireland have stated that the stress of press conferences, media and television promotions, training, and fighting have put a major strain on some of his relationships back home. The report also states that Conor will be giving up both belts if he, in fact, defeats Alvarez at UFC 205.
It’s not expected to be a permanent departure from UFC for the 28-year-old McGregor, but he will supposedly be away from action for an extended period of time as he tries to get things straightened out in Ireland.
In one sense, this could be good news for the UFC in its attempts to keep former featherweight champion Jose Aldo. The fighter came out last week and said that he wanted to be released from his UFC contract because Dana White wouldn’t force Conor to give up the title even though his last two fights were at welterweight and his fight with Alvarez will be at lightweight.
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) October 5, 2016
It’s not uncommon for fighters to go up or down in weight classes, but this is a unique situation in that McGregor has kind of held the featherweight title hostage as he has fought Nate Diaz twice in the last year and will now face Alvarez. With Conor out of the picture, Aldo would likely receive the first crack at winning the vacated title.
While it may help with the Aldo situation, White and the UFC can’t be too thrilled with one of their biggest draws stepping away from the spotlight. McGregor’s fights are always must-see television, which leads to large amounts of cash rolling in from pay-per-views for UFC. If Conor McGregor does indeed step away, then the UFC would be without its two biggest stars, as Ronda Rousey has been absent since her loss to Holly Holm in November of 2015.
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