Dana White has gone on record this past week and said that if Conor defeats Cowboy next month, then he may well be on pace for a rematch with Khabib. The idea didn’t sit well with a lot of people who have been waiting to get a crack at the current lightweight champ. And among those people is also the name of one of the most exciting fighters at lightweight – Justin Gaethje.
“The Highlight” mocked Dana’s statements regarding the potential rematch through his Twitter account. White, while speaking to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, has cleared that the reason Conor is still in line for a shot at UFC gold is because of the rivalry between him and Khabib. Meanwhile, Gaethje’s unwillingness to accept fights that have been offered to him are also a contributing factor.
“Come on guys, Conor, look what Conor has done over the last however many years, right?,” White said. “Then he loses to Khabib, in a fight that was you know, when you talk about bad blood, that was like next level of bad blood. Gaethje was on his way up too. We’ve offered Gaethje a lot of fights that Gaethje hasn’t taken either. So, Conor is in line next for this fight if he beats ‘Cowboy’.”
If one takes into factor the kind of business that Conor generates, the idea of a rematch wouldn’t be that surprising. His ability to sell fights has always been unparalleled. And once you rope in the rivalry that he has with Khabib, the business gets that much better. Their first fight wasn’t really competitive inside the Octagon. But the fireworks that took place afterwards will make a perfect backdrop for the rematch. But none of this explains why Conor is returning to fight at welterweight. Dana took the opportunity to explain that as well.
“Because Conor wants to fight three times this year and he’s hoping that if he beats Cowboy, he can turn right around and fight Khabib,” White said. “That timing and math isn’t going to work out but you know Conor, Conor thinks the way Conor thinks. So his thing is, I’ll fight Cowboy, I’ll beat Cowboy, I’ll be ready to fight Khabib at 155 if anything happens, because we’re going into Khabib-Tony again. So in Conor’s mind, Conor would be ready for that fight.”
If McGregor overcomes Cowboy then he can stay in shape, just in anyone of Khabib or McGregor pulls out of their scheduled fight for April. Judging by the history of the pairing between the two it wouldn’t be that bad of an idea. However, all this will only happen once Conor could get past the hurdle of Cerrone.
“The level of disrespect shown to Cowboy through this whole thing, apparently people forgot,” White said. “Cowboy’s lost two in a row before and come back and gone on unbelievable runs.”