Conor McGregor’s coach is adamant that the Irish star will not be fighting Nate Diaz on December 30th, as was recently reported, but he has proposed an interesting date and city for the rubber match.
Recently reports surfaced that said McGregor – Diaz III was close to being finalized for UFC 219, but Dana White quickly shot that down. McGregor’s head coach, John Kavanagh, attended a launch for the Original Penguin AW17 collection this week in Dublin, and the Straight Blast Gym founder also said McGregor and Diaz are not fighting, December 30th.
But, Kavanagh also reportedly made this proposal at the event (quotes via MMA Fighting):
“If it was my choice, and I must stress that this is only my choice and that doesn’t mean it’s going to happen, it would be Nate Diaz in March,” Kavanagh said. “That’s what I would push towards.
“I have in my head that it would be a Paddy’s Day card in New York, Nate Diaz 3. I think that would be absolutely amazing. That’s what I would wish for.
“That’s what I’ll be leaning towards with my 0.1 percent influence when I meet with Conor and Audie (Attar) tomorrow. I want Diaz 3, Paddy’s Day in New York.”
It’s certainly an intriguing idea, and there’s no question that it would be a massive, massive fight. If you’re wondering, yes, St. Patrick’s Day does fall on a Saturday next year, so that would work.
These latest comments from Kavanagh seem to reinforce what he has said previously, in terms of McGregor not fighting before the year is up. Leading up to McGregor’s boxing match with Floyd Mayweather last month, White reported that the lightweight champ was eager to fight in the Octagon, before 2017 concluded. McGregor also made similar comments.
So, with that in mind, you have to wonder if the UFC would prefer to have McGregor return to the cage earlier in 2018, rather than on March 17th. If for no other reason than to increase the likelihood of booking McGregor as many times as possible for bouts next year. Further, Tony Ferguson and Kevin Lee are fighting for the interim belt next week.
But, really, if McGregor says he doesn’t want to return until March, that’s what’s going to happen.