Dana White Confirms Conor McGregor Still Not in USADA Testing Pool, but ‘100%’ Believes Fight With Chandler Happens in 2023

The UFC President revealed that McGregor has still not re-entered USADA for a required six months, but remains adamant that his fight with Chandler could still come before the end of the year.

Conor McGregor
Courtesy of @UFCNews on Twitter

Dana White still believes there’s a “100 percent” chance that Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler fight in 2023.

McGregor’s long-awaited return to the Octagon has been anticipated ever since the promotion announced him as a coach for the 31st season of The Ultimate Fighter, currently airing on ESPN. The Irishman was expected to square off with his opposing TUF coach, Michael Chandler, but fans are beginning to express doubt over the fight ever coming to fruition after McGregor missed the deadline to re-enter the USADA testing pool for a 2023 comeback.

Despite that, Dana White believes that McGregor vs. Chandler not only will happen but could very well take place before the end of the year. Speaking with ESPN’s Aaron Bronsteter, White suggested that a 2023 return is not entirely off the table for the Irishman. However, White also revealed that McGregor has not yet re-entered the USADA testing pool for a required six-month before competing.

Asked whether or not there’s a possibility that McGregor could skirt the system via an exemption, similar to the one Brock Lesnar received ahead of his UFC 200 return, White couldn’t answer one way or the other, but he certainly didn’t rule it out. 

“We’ll see how that plays out. They’re saying that now, but we don’t… Who knows. I don’t talk about sh*t until sh*t happens, you know what I mean? To sit here and think hypothetically how a million different things could happen. I have no idea. I’m focused on what’s happening this Saturday, and then next Saturday. UFC 300 isn’t even on my mind right now,” White said.

“The Conor thing, who the hell knows how that’s going to play out? Who cares what USADA says? We’ll see what happens when it happens.”

Dana White Details Altercation Between Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler on TUF

Earlier this week, Conor McGregor was involved in one of the most viral moments in the history of The Ultimate Fighter when he violently shoved Chandler inside the Octagon after his team suffered a sixth-straight loss. In the clip, which you can see below, McGregor proceeded to take off his jacket, making it look like he was ready to throw hands with Chandler right then and there.

White can be seen rushing into the Octagon and asking Chandler’s team to exit the area before things escalated further. While it certainly made for great TV, White revealed that incidents like that are a nightmare when dealing with the Nevada State Athletic Commission. 

“It started escalating and nobody was getting in the middle of it, so I realized that I had to do it.”

White continued. “What people don’t understand is when they see stuff like that happens, they’re like, ‘Oh, they love it.’ The commission doesn’t love it. It’s bad when that stuff happens and it’s a pain in the a** for us and it can mess a lot of things up. That can never happen. I was waiting for someone to jump in and they didn’t. Instead of jumping in, it actually started to escalate. So, yeah. Not good.”

Published on July 7, 2023 at 2:29 pm
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