Conor McGregor’s war with Khabib Nurmagomedov is not over.
McGregor returns to action at UFC 257 on Saturday night when he takes on Dustin Poirier in a lightweight rematch.
Of course, his main goal is to regain the lightweight strap and especially do that by beating current champion Nurmagomedov in a rematch. As per UFC president Dana White, Nurmagomedov — who announced his retirement in October — needs to be impressed by a lightweight contender if he is to return.
However, “The Eagle” contradicted those claims in a recent interview.
“… This [fighting] is what I have been doing all my life and I will continue to train constantly as well. But if we talk about the fights, they are not part of my plans.
“My mother is the most precious thing I have left. Come on, you won’t push me to do things that will disappoint my mother. … I don’t even have any plans for the UFC in the near future. I don’t even have thoughts about preparing for the fight. I saw how Umar [Nurmagomedov] was preparing now and I think: Alhamdulillah I have left it behind.”
McGregor: The Sport Needs The Rematch To Happen
It seems McGregor caught wind of those comments as while he believes his war with Nurmagomedov is not over, he will not chase a fight with the Dagestan native either.
Even if he believes it’s a fight the world needs to see.
“I don’t really care,” McGregor said at the pre-fight press conference when asked about Nurmagomedov needing to be impressed. “He did not say — Dana said that. Let’s just get through the fight. All these men are up here. There’s plenty of challenges and it’s a tough business. Things have gone on in his personal life, I don’t wish him any harm. It [first fight] was in 2018. A lot of time has passed. The world knows this fight is not over. This war is not over. This sport needs it to happen. The people need it to happen.
“I’m not going to chase him if he doesn’t want it and that’s it. I’ll keep my calm and move on. I’m back here at the 155-pound division. I’ll show the world what’s what over time and that’s it. It begins Saturday night against Dustin Poirier.”
While it would be disappointing not to see a rematch, getting an active McGregor competing against all the current lightweight contenders is certainly one heck of a consolation.