English UFC heavyweight contender Tom Aspinall said he’d love to see a couple of huge box-office bouts for Conor McGregor when the Irishman returns to the cage, but is unsure whether they’ll come to fruition.
Aspinall chatted with Midnite.com, where he weighed in on a range of MMA-related topics, including fan-favourites Conor McGregor and Paddy Pimblett.
Aspinall shared the fight card twice with fellow British star Pimblett, with the Liverpudlian lightweight capturing the imagination of the MMA world with his larger-than-life personality and entertaining performances inside the cage.
Aspinall said he was high on the Scouse star, and said that a bout between “Paddy The Baddy” and Conor McGregor would deliver one of the UFC’s biggest box office events in the promotion’s history – if it ever happened.
“Paddy is doing great,” he said.
“He’s doing it the right way that’s for sure. He’s making money, he’s getting eyes on him. At this point he’s had relatively few fights so it’s difficult to say how far he can go, but he seems to be improving and he looks great. He looks like he’s improving a lot so I’m excited to see how far Paddy can go.
“I agree with Paddy that him and Conor McGregor would be one of the biggest fights of all time. I don’t think it’s going to happen, though.”
When asked to predict the fantasy fight, Aspinall admitted it was a tricky bout to pick.
“It depends on which Conor turns up,” he suggested.
“He’s looked a bit inconsistent of late, but he’s still very good, so who knows? I’d love to see that fight though.”
Aspinall might not be convinced that we’ll ever see McGregor vs. Pimblett, but he is holding out hope that the MMA world gets to see a trilogy fight between the Dubliner and his old adversary Nate Diaz.
“I’d like to see Conor versus Nate Diaz for the third time, I’d love to see that,” he admitted.
“I’m a big Diaz fan and he looked great in his last fight. I think that would definitely be a fight that everybody would like to see.
“Any time Conor fights anybody it’s a big fight. Conor could fight the postman and everybody would tune in. And Diaz is a massive draw as well – I’d like to see them fight each other for the third time, both fights have been great so far and I’ll definitely be up for watching a third one.”
Aspinall also shared his pick for the trilogy bout, as he predicted an outcome that would “not surprise” one of the two protagonists.
“I think Diaz would win the third one,” he stated.
“He’s looked very consistent recently. Even though he’s taken a couple of losses, he’s looked good in the losses and Conor’s not looked himself, to be honest.
“But you never know, the layoff might do him good. The injury might do him good. He might come back refocused and it would be a very interesting fight – but I think Diaz wins.
“I want to see Diaz make as much money as he can because he deserves it.
“As far as I know, his contract with the UFC is up and he’s not re-signed. These veterans who have had as many fights as they’ve had – I want to see them make as much money as they can because they deserve it. They deserve not to have to work again.”