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It’s been over two years since Conor McGregor has competed in a fight, but the UFC superstar appears to have his return already mapped out with a trio of start-studded matchups.
During a ringside interview while he was attending the boxing match between Anthony Joshua and Robert Helenius on Saturday, McGregor was asked about his plans for his comeback.
“December, [Michael] Chandler, I have to do it,” McGregor told TalkSport. “I’ve just got to grab him by the chest [and smack him]. That’s what I’ve got to do.”
McGregor then added that he’s eyeing future matchups against Justin Gaethje and Nate Diaz.
“Chandler next in December and then [Justin] Gaethje, BMF and then we’ll do the Nate [Diaz] trilogy,” he said.
Chamatkar Sandhu @SandhuMMA
Conor McGregor says he’ll be back fighting in December and his opponent will be Michael Chandler. He says he’ll then fight Justin Gaethje followed by Nate Diaz 👀pic.twitter.com/LZsondbCwy
McGregor and Chandler are coaching against one another in the 31st season of The Ultimate Fighter reality competition series. While a fight between them has always been the plan, McGregor has yet to re-enter the USADA testing pool.
Per Damon Martin of MMA Fighting, fighters who drop out of the pool usually “have to undergo at least six months of testing before being allowed to compete again.” There’s a chance McGregor receives a waiver similar to the one given to Brock Lesnar in 2016, which allowed him to compete at UFC 200. However, Lesnar later tested positive for a banned substance, and his fight against Mark Hunt was overturned to a no-contest.
Gaethje found himself on McGregor’s radar after he claimed the UFC BMF title last month with a head kick knockout of Dustin Poirier, who was the last person to defeat McGregor in back-to-back fights in 2021. Diaz has been one of McGregor’s biggest rivals, as the two of them hold one win apiece against one another.
While McGregor’s ambitious plans are sure to generate excitement from fans, it remains to be seen if they will actually come to fruition.