It remains to be seen what happens next for both Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov, but could the UFC be targeting a bout between the two next?
After McGregor put away Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205 to become the lightweight champ, immediately there was talk about him facing Nurmagomedov. But, McGregor took that talk down a notch by arguing that “The Eagle” needs to be more active. Then Dana White said McGregor was planning to take an extended break, and that kicked off speculation about a Nurmagomedov – Tony Ferguson fight.
Well, recently White spoke with New York’s FOX 5, and the UFC boss man discussed the promotion’s plans for Russia. While doing so, White said the following (quote via MMA Junkie):
“We’re focused very heavily on Russia right now,” White said. “First of all, there’s tons of talent coming out of Russia, and a lot of fans. There’s a fighter named Khabib who’s from Russia, and he’s insanely popular. The next fight could be Conor vs. Khabib.”
Now sure, none of this means necessarily that McGregor – Nurmagomedov is in the works. Theoretically, Nurmagomedov could be McGregor’s next opponent, particularly if he scores another win while the Irish star takes a break.
But, recently McGregor also reported that he isn’t sure when he’ll fight next, and that he never said he was taking a 10 month hiatus. So, maybe McGregor – Nurmagomedov is something the UFC is looking at.
Nurmagomedov also fought at UFC 205 and submitted Michael Johnson in the third round. The vaunted grappler has gone 24-0 to date.