John Kavanagh not keen on training Conor for another fight
Conor McGregor’s longtime coach John Kavanagh says he would need some convincing from McGregor in order to agree to help him train for another fight. He’s also not sure if McGregor will even want to fight again at this stage of his life.
“Will he fight again? I don’t know, Kavanagh told The Independent. “I know him as a person and know that coming off two losses – even though one was boxing – will be hard for him. But he’s 30, two kids, and has a big whiskey deal that’s making him more money than fighting ever did. Would you get up in the morning to be punched in the face? I don’t think so.”
Kavanagh added it would take something special to have him agree to train McGregor for another fight.
“I love the whole journey we’ve had but I’d need a good ‘why’,” he said. “It might be Diaz again because he promised that fight. It might be a rematch with Khabib. But if it was just: ‘Well, they want me to fight that guy’ I think I’d say, ‘I wish you the best.’”
With all of the options McGregor has on the table for fighting, something tells us Kavanagh is going to get that call.
Woodley looking for a fight after all
While Dana White has been saying that Tyron Woodley has been difficult to get to commit to a fight, Woodley is now saying that he is willing to fight, and soon. Woodley appeared on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show Monday to try and clear the air.
“I’ve agreed to fight Colby,” Woodley said (transcribed by MMAJunkie). “I’ve agreed to fight really anybody – that’s the funny part. I just asked for a little more time before I can confirm (my hand is cleared). I’ve never said no to Jan. 26. Let’s get that on record. I actually want to fight in Anaheim. I’m undefeated in Anaheim. I’ve got a lot of strong roots in California, so it would be silly for me not to want to fight there.”
UFC 233 has been without a main event since the Henry Cejudo-TJ Dillashaw flyweight title fight was moved to the Jan. 19 ESPN+ event last week. With less than seven weeks until the event, UFC needs to put something together quickly and at this point, whoever does main event won’t be able to get in a full training camp. If it is Woodley, it will be because he knows he’s ready.
“That’s what a champion does,” he said. “What a champion doesn’t do, he doesn’t go out there with an injury. He doesn’t go out there knowing he’s not 100 percent and rolls those dice, because if I go out there, and my hand’s not ready to go, and I fight Colby Covington, and I come up short that night, nobody’s going to care that my hand’s hurt.”
ONE signs deal with Turner
ESPN’s Ariel Helwani is reporting that ONE Championship has signed a broadcast deal with Turner to air the Asian promotion’s fights in the U.S. The deal is said to be a three-year term, to begin on Jan. 1. 24 ONE events will air on TNT and Turner digital platforms. The deal comes after a string of high-profile U.S. signings including Eddie Alvarez, Demetrious Johnson, and Sage Northcutt.
–Jon Jones has been cleared to fight by the California State Athletic Commission in a hearing today. He may be subjected to more testing over the next 3-4 months.
-Kevin Lee told “The MMA Hour” yesterday that things will be different when he takes on Al Iaquinta in a rematch this weekend. “I just feel like I’m a completely different fighter from that [2014 fight], and I think anybody who watches that and then goes back and watches me in my recent years, you can just tell I’m a different man than that.”
–Also appearing on “The MMA Hour,” Valentina Shevchenko told host Luke Thomas that she doesn’t think a rematch with Joanna Jedrzejczyk is the right move at the moment.
“For now, we have so many opponents to fight with,” she said. “For me, I have much more goals for defending the title, and Joanna, she has more business in strawweight, so I think for now we are good to go and move forward.”
–Dustin Poirer told MMAJunkie that he’s frustrated with the continuances granted to Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor by the Nevada Athletic Commission. He may be interested in taking a fight with Tony Ferguson while Nurmagomedov and McGregor work things out with the NAC.
“I want to fight Tony,” Poirier said. “And if it’s not Tony, good for Tony, he’s (expletive) more than earned his shot at Khabib. He’s definitely next in line for the world championship. He’s ahead of me. I agree.
-The prelims for UFC 231 on FS1 averaged 786,000 viewers.
-Jessica Penne vs. Jodie Esquibel has been announced for UFC Fight Night Brooklyn on Jan. 19.
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