Islam Makhachev Open To Conor McGregor Fight Before Arman Tsarukyan: ‘Everyone Can Finish Conor’

Makhachev suggests he could fight McGregor and Tsarukyan in neighboring months later this year.

Makachev Mcgregor
(via @islam_makhachev, @thenotoriousmma - Instagram)

Let the record show Islam Makhachev wouldn’t say no to a fight with Conor McGregor.

First things first, the UFC Lightweight Champion has business to take care of with former interim champ Dustin Poirier. Makhachev is set to make his third title defense in the main event of UFC 302 on June 1st.

While not exactly the front-runner in the lightweight division, Poirier reached title contention again as #1-ranked Arman Tsarukyan turned down the title shot because it was too quick of a turnaround for him, having gone three rounds with Charles Oliveira at UFC 300 last month.

“Everybody Can Finish Conor 10x Now”

Poirier’s array of wins include a knockout of Benoit Saint-Denis at UFC 299 and most notably two back-to-back TKO’s of UFC superstar Conor McGregor in 2021. Let’s just say his next opponent Makhachev isn’t all that impressed…

“He just finished Conor twice. He beat a lot of guys,” Kamaru Usman told Makhachev on the ‘Pound 4 Pound’ Podcast.

“Why you say he finished Connor twice, brother?” Makhachev replied. “Everybody can finish Connor 10 times right now.”

“The Notorious” McGregor has in fact been stopped in three of his last four fights or four out of his last five if you want to include his one-off boxing match with Floyd Mayweather in 2017 that ended in a tenth-round TKO. Makhachev’s longtime teammate and predecessor Khabib Nurmagomedov tapped out McGregor with a choke in their 2018 clash.

Makhachev Says McGregor Isn’t The ‘High-Level Fighter’ He Once Was

Nurmagomedov and McGregor pocketed millions from their heated rivalry, breaking the record for most pay-per-view buys in UFC history. While McGregor has definitely seen better days in the Octagon, the Irishman still moves the needle more than anybody in the MMA stratosphere, breaking through a $20M gate in his return fight against Michael Chandler.

Makhachev vs. McGregor might not make all the sense in the world right now, but Makhachev is down for the fight if it so happens to come his way.

“Brother, why not? People have to be stupid to say no, of course I’ll fight with him,” Makhachev said, when asked if he’d fight McGregor, provided they both win their next matchups.

“When I will fight [Tsarukyan] next time like October or November. I can fight August or September with McGregor,” Makhachev said, when asked if McGregor could potentially cut the line at lightweight. “Easy, this guy not [the] same. I don’t want to like make him feel like look bad, but everybody know this guy not same. Before, yeah for sure, when he was fighting with Khabib is in the good shape, you know he is a high level fighter, but right now it’s too much alcohol, too much whiskey and it’s not same.”

Poirier Has A Different Opponent But Still Has The ‘Same Problem’

Dustin Poirier played his part in Conor McGregor’s downward spiral and now he takes on Makhachev in what is likely his last chance ever to fight for the world championship. The 35 year-old has been succumbed to the grappling of Khabib Nurmagomedov and Charles Oliveira in previous fights for the undisputed title and Makhachev thinks it will be more of the same, come June 1st.

“He have very heavy hands and very good guillotine – that’s it. Wrestling and grappling? No,” Makhachev said with a smile. “Wrestling and grappling… everybody know this and he have always problem when somebody take him down, hold his back. He have always problems. Same problem. But his nickname “Diamond”, I have to go first [of] June, take the diamond and put on my belt.”

Islam Makhachev is referring to the red stones a champion gets on their belt after each completed title defense. He’ll look to add some more bling with a win at UFC 302. 

Published on May 16, 2024 at 6:16 pm
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