Belfast Telegraph

Dana White claims Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov on track for a rematch

Conor McGregor, left, and Khabib Nurmagomedov throw punches during a lightweight title mixed martial arts bout at UFC 229 in Las Vegas, Saturday, Oct. 6, 2018. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Conor McGregor, left, and Khabib Nurmagomedov throw punches during a lightweight title mixed martial arts bout at UFC 229 in Las Vegas, Saturday, Oct. 6, 2018. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Adam McKendry

By Adam McKendry

UFC president Dana White says he is ready to arrange a rematch between two of the sport's leading lights in Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov.

The two fighters are currently serving bans for their parts in the chaos following their first fight in October, which was won by Khabib.

The Russian forced McGregor to tap out in the fourth round of their battle in Las Vegas, however he followed that up by leaping into the crowd to incite the Irishman's fans.

That sparked several small skirmishes both in and outside the octagon, leading to increased interest in the pair going at it again once they return to the sport.

And White has sent fans into frenzy after admitting that the rematch is only a matter of signing on the dotted line in a recent interview.

"As long as everything goes right, this fight should happen," White told TMZ in America.

The fight seems the logical option for lightweight champion Nurmagomedov, as it would both be a fight he would be expected to win and would undoubtedly result in a large pay packet.

However, the appeal of taking on arguably stronger opponents such as Tony Ferguson or Max Holloway is also turning his head, as is a potential boxing-MMA crossover fight with Floyd Mayweather.

Unbeaten five-time world champion Mayweather has spoken of his desire to make that fight happen too after taking apart Japanese kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa in 140 seconds on New Year's Eve.

Nurmagomedov's manager Ali Abdelaziz said: "Me and (Mayweather) have been texting each other for the last month and if he says he did not, I'm gonna put everything on line. Do not lie, Floyd.

"He’s very much begging for the fight. I told him, I said he’s 57 years old, his body’s weak, he’s fragile, he’s got a small head.

"He thinks Khabib is easy money but Khabib is much younger, much stronger, more tougher than Conor, a guy that went to the eleventh round with him.

"And Conor gave up, he’s a quitter. Khabib is no quitter."

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