McGregor’s Coach Wanted Fight With Diaz, Okays Ferguson As Next Opponent
Another week has gone by and we are still not sure who UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor will fight next. We have been waiting since McGregor’s fight with Floyd Mayweather for the announcement of the champion’s next opponent.
UFC President Dana White stated after UFC 216 that lightweight interim champion Tony Ferguson would be the next opponent for McGregor. This a fight that would unify the two belts. On October 13, McGregor (21-3) seemed to side with White’s comments by posting this on twitter.
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) October 13, 2017
But days before the post was made, McGregor’s striking coach Owen Roddy said that a fight with Nate Diaz made more sense to him. McGregor and Diaz have each fought once before, each winning a fight a piece.
But after McGregor and White’s comments, it seems Roddy has a change in his tone. Roddy spoke why the Ferguson (23-3) might in fact make the most sense.
“It’s exciting,” Roddy told the “Talking Brawls” podcast. “When the word goes out like that, and people start talking about it, it’s usually not far off of the deal being done. It could be a good one. Ferguson is the interim champion and rightfully so. He had a good performance against (Kevin) Lee, and he’s had a lot of good performances.”
“I’d like to see it. People, including myself, were talking about the Diaz fight, but who knows that may come again. But if it’s Ferguson, that’s going to be a cracker, as well.”
McGregor’s head coach John Kavanagh had also previously stated that he wanted Diaz (19-11) for McGregor next as well.
“I’ve said for a long time that the Nate Diaz trilogy fight at lightweight is what I’d personally like to see next,” Kavangh wrote in a guest column. “That still needs to be put to bed.”
But that was written before Ferguson won the interim lightweight championship by submitting Lee (16-3) via triangle-choke in the 3rd round at UFC 216. Ferguson has been the most impressive lightweight in the UFC with a 10-fight win streak.
Ferguson has been telling McGregor to “defend or vacate”, since he has yet to defend the lightweight belt he won last November.
“Obviously money talks at the end of the day, and whatever makes the most money is what both people would go for. But because people are asking for it and posting about it, that’s starting to gain the momentum that’s needed to get that big fight. It’s starting to build. It’ll be a good fight. It’ll definitely be a good fight.”
Roddy isn’t backing down that his fighter will still come out of that fight with the belt around his waist.
“I still see the same outcome,” Roddy said. “I still see Conor – if they’re standing for any sort of extended period on the feet, it’ll be a quick one and that’s it. He’s just not as tidy as Conor. You play the percentages, and Conor’s the cleaner, more refined striker. Ferguson is tough. He’s unorthodox. But in my opinion, Conor’s just the superior striker, most definitely.”
UFC 219 is on December 19 in Las Vegas still doesn’t have a main event. McGregor has stated he wanted to fight before the end of the year. So if a fight between McGregor and Ferguson is going to be the main event for UFC 219, expect a fight announcement soon.