Conor McGregor
Conor McGregor via UFC-Ultimate Fighting Championship YouTube

Conor McGregor is now targeting 2024 for his return to the Octagon. McGregor was rumored for a December fight with Michael Chandler at UFC 296 to culminate their time as coaches on The Ultimate Fighter. Now, he doesn’t see it happening with drug testing by the USADA.

Conor McGregor: ‘They’re Not Going To Let Me Fight In December’

Former UFC champion Conor McGregor is now looking towards next year to make his long-awaited return to the Octagon.

McGregor took to social media to reveal that it isn’t looking promising for him to face Michael Chandler at the December UFC 296 event. This is due to needing six months of drug testing by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

“They’re not going to let me fight in December, ladies and gentleman,” McGregor posted.

UFC president Dana White also confirmed the plans during a post-fight press conference for UFC 292 earlier this week.

The cutoff for being enrolled in the USADA six months of drug testing pool ended in June to make December possible.

Previously, the UFC was able to gain an exemption for a fighter to avoid the six months of testing when Brock Lesnar returned for UFC 200. However, Lesnar later failed a drug test and the promotion was tied up in legal matters involving his opponent, Mark Hunt.

McGregor has been on the sidelines since suffering a second consecutive defeat at the hands of Dustin Poirier. “Notorious” also suffered a serious leg injury in the loss.

While Chandler remains the planned opponent, McGregor has also called out Justin Gaethje, who recently defeated Poirier. He has made it known his plans include a third fight with Nate Diaz after the two split their first two encounters.

Conor McGregor UFC Debut