The Notorious Conor McGregor is still in hot water over the April 5th Barclay’s incident in New York. There have been rumors of plea deals, but when it comes down to it, that’s all talk, and none of it is verified. What we do know is that McGregor is scheduled to be in court on July 26th, charged with three counts of assault and one criminal mischief.
But what’s next for McGregor? Hopefully, his current out-of-ring issues won’t affect his ability to fight in the United States. It’s been a while since McGregor has been in the octagon, going on 2-years since he fought Eddie Alvarez in November of 2016. But there were thoughts that he might be back in a fight as early as September, but given the timetable with his Brooklyn trial, that now seems unlikely. What is still doable is an October return against Khabib Nurmagomedov.
A meeting in the Octagon against Khabib would be poetic and make the bus incident, and court case all seem like a masterfully written storyline built to add drama to the impending match between two rivals. It would likely be another record-setting viewership event. Adding to the storyline is the fact that Conor has recently been seen in Russia. He attended the 2018 World Cup Final and met with Russian president Valdimir Putin.
But What About Diaz, Lee, & Ferguson?
We would all love to see McGregor-Diaz 3, the tiebreaker. And money-wise, next to a fight with his newer rival Khabib, Nate Diaz could be the most viable option. If McGregor especially if he sees a UFC suspension and the landscape looks different upon his return.
Due to lack of activity, Conor forfeited his belts, so given the fact that he never lost them in the octagon, he should be the number one challenger upon return and be entitled to a chance to take them back if he wishes. Kevin Lee stated that he thinks he’ll fight Conor by the end of the year. But when you look at top betting sites like Betonline, Nate Diaz is -250 to be Conor McGregor’s next opponent, and Tony Ferguson is -183, with Floyd Mayweather on the list at +1000 (10 to 1). Soit looks like Las Vegas and top online shops still think that Diaz is the most likely option.
There has been a lot of talk in the boxing world as well. Oscar De La Hoya stated that he would come out of retirement to fight McGregor. There has also been talk about Pac-Man entering the mix. But that one is doubtful for a couple of reasons. The first is Pacquiao will most likely want to fight at 140, and there no way that Conor is making that weight without a hard struggle. De La Hoya would be the better boxing match for Conor anyhow. Oscar De La Hoya has been out of the ring since his loss to Pacquiao in 2008. Ten years of ring rust is a lot of rust, and I would actually favor McGregor in that fight.
Mayweather was trolling on social media about entering the realm of MMA. Before and directly after the boxing bout between these two legends, Conor was taunting Floyd with statements like, ‘come into my world [the Octagon]. And itwould seem that Mayweather might be willing to do so.
That said, Mayweather is all about defense and not getting hit. So I don’t see him being in a ‘real’ MMA fight.
I think that if McGregor can fight sooner rather than later, he’ll go after Khabib. There is just too much momentum, and the headlines potential are just too good. Otherwise, look for McGregor-Diaz III.