If you follow the almost daily news regarding McGregor, then you know there’s been no shortage of speculation as to who he’ll fight next. McGregor has repeatedly said he wants to get a rematch with Khabib Nurmagomedov, but the lightweight champ is booked to fight Dustin Poirier on September 7th. Other fighters like Justin Gaethje, Nate Diaz, Donald Cerrone and Tony Ferguson have also been frequently cited, as possibilities for McGregor’s next bout.
Well, Pettis is currently booked to face Diaz on August 17th at UFC 241. Recently the former lightweight champ’s manager Abraham Kawa spoke with MMA Junkie, and while doing so, he said this:
“Even Conor fighting Khabib, I don’t think that’s the fight,” Kawa said. “I actually don’t want to see that fight right now. Maybe after a while, yes. But right now I think Conor vs. Anthony is the fight. I’m looking at it as (if) Anthony beats Nate, and I think Conor is next on the horizon.”
“…We’ve seen Anthony vs. ‘Cowboy’ (Donald Cerrone), and now we’ll see Anthony vs. Nate. They genuinely don’t like each other. They genuinely don’t see eye to eye, and they’re two guys that are going to come forward and throw. The better man is going to win, and I think if Anthony does what he’s supposed to do, he will win.
“I think next in line should be Conor. I don’t think there should be anyone else.”
It’s an interesting idea, and there’s no question that in terms of abilities and styles, it’s a very intriguing match-up. But, would McGregor write off facing Diaz in a rubber match if the Stockton star does lose to Pettis? Maybe. But, that could depend on how the fight unfolds.
Further, would a bout with Pettis in these circumstances be more attractive to McGregor, than say, facing one of the top-ranked lightweights? While Pettis is coming off a jaw-dropping, KO win over Stephen Thompson, he’s not that far removed from losses to Poirier and Ferguson. Would a win over Pettis advance McGregor into a title shot? If that’s still indeed the Irish star’s target? Maybe. But, a victory over say, someone like Gaethje, would almost certainly accomplish that.
UFC 241 will be hosted by the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.