Dana White says ‘Iron’ Michael Chandler has the financial security to sit on the sidelines and wait for Conor McGregor.
We’re closing in on one year since the UFC first announced that Chandler would be the man to welcome back the Irish megastar to the Octagon. Slated for a scrap in December following their stint on The Ultimate Fighter, McGregor’s return was frequently called into question as he had failed to re-enter the USADA testing pool for a required six months of pre-fight screening.
With McGregor rejoining the pool in October, all signs pointed toward their long-awaited bout finally going down in April at the promotion’s next milestone event, UFC 300. However, even that seems to be up in the air.
During an appearance on the Full Send Podcast with the Nelk Boys, Dana White suggested that Chandler could theoretically sit out for as long as it takes to get Conor McGregor to sign on the dotted line.
“The good thing for guys like Chandler, and you know there’s a lot of sh*t talk about fighter pay and all that other sh*t – you don’t see these guys hurrying up to fight,” White said. “Jon Jones takes off for f*cking years.
“Chandler can hang out and wait for f*cking Conor. When you think about Chandler, Chandler was fighting for f*cking Bellator, right? Now Chandler can just sit around and take his time and wait for Conor however long it takes, so these guys are all in good positions where they can wait for the right time, the right fight.”
Kyle: Do you think Conor fights next year?
Dana White: He 100% fights next year.
Kyle: And is it still vs Chandler or could it be anyone now?
Dana: We will see. I mean, we’ll see the timing of when it goes down. The good thing for guys like Chandler, and you know there’s a… pic.twitter.com/0OJZHFNJYn
— AFeldmanMMA (@afeldMMA) November 28, 2023
Dana White Non-Committal When Asked If Chandler vs. McGregor Will Be the Irishman’s First Fight Back
Unfortunately, not even White could say with absolute certainty that Chander would be the first man to fight Conor McGregor upon the former two-division titleholder’s return. Asked about the fight, White simply said, “We’ll see,” but admitted to being intrigued by the potentially high-octane matchup.
“We will see. I mean, we’ll see the timing of when it goes down. The good thing for guys like Chandler, and you know there’s a lot of sh*t talk about fighter pay and all that other sh*t, you don’t see these guys hurrying up to fight. Chandler can hang out and wait for f*cking Conor.”
He added, “When you actually think about the fight – Chandler vs. Conor is a fun fight. A fun f*cking fight.”
The continuous stream of delays has led many fans and fellow fighters to suggest that McGregor will never return to the Octagon. White attempted to quell those concerns, saying that 2024 will without a doubt be the year that ‘The Notorious’ steps back inside the Octagon.
“Yes, 100 percent,” White said. “(McGregor) fights next year.”
Watch Dana White’s full appearance on the podcast below: