Conor McGregor returns to the UFC’s lightweight division on January 23 against former interim champion Dustin Poirier in the main event of UFC 257. Ahead of his UFC return, McGregor reminisced about the last time he walked into the UFC Octagon under the lightweight division at UFC 229 against Khabib Nurmagomedov.
“I hope we continue in 2021 as we were supposed in 2020.”
Conor McGregor failed to compete again in 2020 after promising a season to fight fans around the world. However, in conversation with former UFC fighter Josh Thompson and UFC referee John McCarthy, the “Notorious” expressed his hope to continue this year how he had envisaged 2020.
“I am very excited to be back down with the weight. For me, a while ago, it was almost like, I don’t know whether I wanted to go down the lightweight division again. It’s a lot of dedication and a lot of commitment.”
Nurmagomedov left the UFC after grabbing the lightweight championship against Eddie Alvarez. McGregor returned almost two years later fresh off a stoppage loss at the hands of Floyd Mayweather inside the boxing ring to take on someone as dominant as Khabib Nurmagomedov.
“I am in a great place right now. And I want to continue that. I would love to put in a good stint here in the lightweight division similar to what I had done in the featherweight division.”
Be that as it may, what’s done is done. Here on, McGregor wants to have a stint in the UFC’s lightweight division similar to his historic run at the featherweight division where he captured the UFC’s featherweight championship with a scintillating knockout win over Jose Aldo to create history.
Why is Conor McGregor not fighting for the UFC championship against Dustin Poirier at UFC 257?
There are several reasons why UFC decided not to award McGregor with the opportunity to get his hands at the lightweight championship. The looming doubts over Khabib Nurmagomedov’s retirement and McGregor’s habit of jumping ships after every fight may have a lot to do with UFC 257 being contested without a title belt on the line.
Additionally, it ties McGregor with another fight to take inside the UFC Octagon in order for him to reclaim the lightweight gold. Meanwhile, UFC can comfortably look at options and push the best fighter forward to fight for the undisputed gold.