With Conor McGregor set on returning to MMA next weekend, the former UFC featherweight and lightweight champion shared some of his plans for what he hopes to be a successful – and active – 2021 to make up for a lack of action last year.
McGregor takes on Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 on Fight Island next Saturday in a bout which will shake up the UFC’s lightweight division.
And it’s that UFC division at 155 pounds which looks all set to be his fighting home for the foreseeable future amid a backdrop of rumours of a boxing match with Manny Pacquiao and a smattering of fights at welterweight inside the Octagon.
“I would like to put a stint in at 155 pounds, for sure,” McGregor told The Mac Life‘s Oscar Willis in an interview from a hotel room in Dubai. “I came into the UFC as a featherweight and I went through the division. I gave it my all in that division and I tore through it like a chainsaw through butter. Interim title, then unified title. Then I went up and reached for greater heights, went to the lightweight division, became lightweight champion and became the first dual-weight champion in the company’s history.
“Then obviously other things presented themselves, the Floyd [Mayweather] fight and where it went. Then I went to the welterweight division, also. I never got a good stint at 155 pounds, a consecutive stint like I’ve done in the featherweight division. I would like to do the same here in the lightweight division that I’ve done in the featherweight division – give it a good run and tear through the division. There’s many good competitors, good fighters, in there, and I feel levels above them all. So I would like to put that stint in.”
Though “The Notorious” has plenty of parties interested in fighting him – be it in a cage or in a ring – it appears that McGregor has plenty of options that interest him in the UFC’s always-stacked lightweight division.
McGregor has to get past Poirier to make some of these potential matchups come to fruition, however, and was clear in saying that he wasn’t looking past his upcoming Louisianan opponent.
But there is one fight that is particularly of interest. After UFC President Dana White broke the news that he was looking to book Nate Diaz a fight back at lightweight, plenty has been made on who the Stockton, California native could be paired with. It appears that McGregor is more than happy to throw his hat into the ring to make that fight happen to complete their trilogy.
“There are dangling carrots – treasure chests that get presented to me,” he continued. “We’ve got world titles in boxing now, there’s talks of… I hear Dana talking [about] Nate Diaz coming back down to lightweight. I love that.
“I’d love to compete against Diaz. We will compete again. If that happens at lightweight for a title, that would be something special, also. So there’s many great options that are in the works and let’s see what happens. I am ready.”