UFC’s lightweight division is very much up in the air right now as we await Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor’s date in front of the Nevada Athletic Commission. A lengthy suspension for either fighter could put plans for the division on hold for some time. The Dec. 10 hearing is only a little over a week away but Dana White is still putting together plans that include Nurmagomedov and McGregor.
These plans include an unofficial lightweight grand prix of sorts featuring Nurmagomedov and McGregor along with Dustin Poirier and Tony Ferguson. White suggested that Ferguson would be next in line for a shot at Nurmagomedov’s championship while McGregor would fight Poirier. The two winners would then fight obviously opening the door for a potential Nurmagomedov-McGregor rematch.
“The fight that makes sense right now (for McGregor) is probably Poirier,” White said on Friday’s Ultimate Fighter Finale post-fight show (via MMAFighting). “And then Tony gets a shot at the title and the two winners fight each other. But I’m not sure exactly on a date when Conor is gonna fight yet. We have to get through this Nevada State Athletic Commission stuff first.”
A McGregor-Poirier fight would be a rematch of McGregor’s pay-per-view debut, a UFC 178 bout that McGregor won by first round TKO. Ferguson and Nurmagomedov have been scheduled to fight each other several times, but the fight has never come to fruition.
While the prospect of these two fights is very appealing and the potential matchups that could result from it even more so, Nurmagomedov and McGregor will have to come out of their commission hearing relatively unscathed in order for the plan to come together.