As we wait to see who Conor McGregor will fight next, it certainly seems like more and more momentum is building behind a scrap with Tony Ferguson, over a third bout with Nate Diaz.
Prior to UFC 216, many believed that a rubber match between McGregor and Diaz was likely in the cards. But, after Tony Ferguson grabbed the interim 155 belt, by submitting Kevin Lee at UFC 216, buzz for “El Cucuy” to fight McGregor definitely increased.
Well, in recent weeks, two of McGregor’s coaches have said that they want to see the star fight Diaz next. The lightweight champ’s head coach, John Kavanagh, has called for a rubber match to go down on St. Patrick’s Day. McGregor’s striking coach, Owen Roddy, also said he’d prefer to see the fighter face Diaz again.
“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. I still see the same outcome. 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.”
“That’s what Dana White is saying and because Ferguson is picking at Conor and stuff like that, it’s starting to look like the more logical fight, but who knows?”
Yup. I would argue it’s not “starting” to look like the right fight to make, it is the way to go. There will be plenty of time in the coming months to book a third fight with Diaz, if things play out that way. McGregor has done many, many remarkable things in his career, but he has yet to defend a UFC title, against the top contender. It’s time to see that no?
It also doesn’t help that Diaz hasn’t fought since last August, when he lost his rematch with McGregor via decision. If he had taken on say, a top lightweight contender, and earned a win since then, his case for a rubber match right now would be stronger.