Next week’s interim lightweight title fight between Tony Ferguson and Kevin Lee could serve as a de facto elimination bout, with the winner getting Conor McGregor next.
But that’s just one possibility for McGregor, who outlined numerous options for his next fight during a Q&A in Glasgow on Friday. Those possibilities may lie in UFC or in boxing, although we doubt it will be the latter.
“There’s an interim belt on the line right now (between Ferguson and Lee) — that’s an option,” McGregor said, via MMAFighting.com. “Of course the Nate Diaz trilogy fight is there. Maybe one of these boxing guys ... maybe (Paulie) Malignaggi would come over and do an MMA bout … or Floyd (Mayweather), maybe I could entice Floyd back.”
Okay, we understand McGregor was just floating ideas here, but we can see neither Malignaggi agreeing to fight McGregor in the octagon nor Mayweather coming back for a rematch. That said, we were among those who doubted Mayweather-McGregor would ever be made.
McGregor sparred with Malignaggi in his preparation for Mayweather.
McGregor-Diaz III would intrigue the UFC community. Diaz submitted McGregor in the second round of their first fight (March 5, 2016), while McGregor won via majority decision in their second (Aug. 20, 2016).
Undefeated lightweights Khabib Nurmagomedov and Justin Gaethje were also among potential opponents mentioned by McGregor. Gaethje is set to take on Eddie Alvarez at The Ultimate Fighter 26 Finale on Dec. 1.
McGregor seems enticed by the payday a super-fight against Georges St-Pierre would bring, but he threw shade at the former middleweight’s comeback.
"It's another money fight, even though he's been retired," McGregor said of a potential bout with St-Pierre. "I don't know. I think he's going to get his ass whupped by (Michael) Bisping (at UFC 217 on Nov. 4 at Madison Square Garden). To be honest, I think it's a mistake for him to step in at that weight after so long out."
The moral of this story? We have no idea who McGregor is going to fight next.