Former featherweight and lightweight UFC champion Conor McGregor is all set to fight Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone at UFC 246 which will take place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
“Conor has signed and ‘Cowboy’ is ready to go,” UFC president Dana White told ESPN’s Brett Okamoto.
McGregor has opened as the slight betting favourite over Cerrone, the underdog, and fans who are interested in betting on this blockbuster matchup can do it on the best betting sites to check out the odds and predictions related to each fighter. Those matches are very popular and often attract many bettors and create a huge buzz.
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This is the Irishman’s first fight since he got dominated by UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov last year. The Russian defeated McGregor via rear-naked choke submission in the fourth round at UFC 229, which took place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in October 2018.
This is also likely Cerrone’s last shot at earning a big payday in the UFC. This is also the biggest fight of his career. He is, however, coming off of two back to back losses to Justin Gaethje and Tony Ferguson via stoppages.
The fight will take place in the welterweight division, which is quite odd considering both fighters had their last fight in the lightweight division. However, both Cerrone and McGregor have fought at 170lbs before. McGregor fought in the welterweight category twice and both the times against Nate Diaz. In the first fight, Diaz submitted him via RNC in the second round at UFC 196. However, McGregor was able to avenge his loss in an epic rematch which took place at UFC 202, where he defeated Diaz via majority decision.
It has been pointed by many fans and even UFC president Dana White that McGregor is relatively small to be competing in the welterweight division. He has had issues with his cardio and after his first loss to Diaz, he blamed his cardio for the loss.
“I was inefficient with my energy but I am humble in victory or defeat,” McGregor said in an interview following his loss at UFC 196.
On the other hand, Cerrone also has a bittersweet experience of fighting at welterweight. After fighting out most part of his career at lightweight, Cerrone moved up to welterweight for the first time in 2016, where he faced Alex Oliveira at UFC Fight Night 83 and defeated him via submission in the first round. He then went on to win his three fights at 170lbs against the likes of Patrick Cote, Rick Story and Matt Brown.
Things went downhill from there, however, when he fought Jorge Masvidal at UFC on Fox 23, where he got knocked out in the second round. He then lost to Robbie Lawler via UD at UFC 214.
He then fought Darren Till at UFC Fight Night 118, where he got brutally knocked out in the first round. This led to Cerrone moving back to the lightweight division.
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“I’m going back to 155. I’m only 175, I’ve been waking up at 175 everyday so it’s like pffft, I’m fine. I’m more focused. At 170, I can just not train and f**k off. I put more into it at 155 so let’s do it, let’s have a couple more fights. I probably won’t take 20 a year anymore. I’m probably gonna take it down a little bit.” Cerrone said back in December of 2017.
Conor McGregor has been teasing a UFC return for the past two months and made his intentions clear in Moscow last month, when he announced that he was going to fight on January 18 in Las Vegas.
The fight is highly intriguing as McGregor is fighting at 170lbs after a layoff of nearly fifteen months while Cerrone has been very active this year, competing four times inside the Octagon. He is 2-2 in the UFC in 2019, whereas Conor McGregor hasn’t won a fight in the UFC in more than three years. His last win was against Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205.
Owen Roddy talks about a potential fight between Conor McGregor and Donald Cerrone