In a new interview Dana White states that the UFC won’t take the featherweight title from Conor McGregor, but at the same time made it clear that the Irish superstar has to make a final decision on whether he’s going to defend the belt or not.
McGregor won the 145lb title by defeating long-time champion Jose Aldo by KO in just 13 seconds at UFC 194 in December of last year, but he’s yet to defend it, instead opting to move up in weight for the time being, leading to two blockbuster showdowns with Nate Diaz so far this year.
After getting revenge over the Stockton star at UFC 202 earlier this month, McGregor was keeping his cards close to his chest about what comes next, but made it clear that he wasn’t overly excited by the prospect of dropping down in weight to face Aldo for a second time.
The UFC can’t keep the top end of the featherweight division on ice forever though, so White is now putting pressure on McGregor to make up his mind once and for all whether he’s going to continue to be a part of that weight class.
“He’s not going to get stripped,” White claimed on NBC Sports Radio. “He’s going to make a decision. He knows the Nate Diaz fight isn’t the fight to make right now.”
“He has to either defend his title or give it up and decide what he wants to do next. We’ll get that figured out with him.”
It’s also interesting to hear White say that a trilogy fight with Diaz isn’t the right move at the moment given that it’s what he was calling for immediately after his victory.
The other big option out there at the moment for McGregor would be to relinquish the featherweight title, but immediately move on to challenge for the lightweight belt instead against Eddie Alvarez.
Let’s not forget that McGregor had initially looked to challenge Rafael dos Anjos for that title earlier this year, only accepting the first fight with Diaz when RDA pulled out injured.
Alvarez has already engaged in some trash-talking with ‘The Notorious’ since he TKO’d Dos Anjos to win the title last month, so that’s sure to be a tempting option for McGregor, and if did win the title, that would then perfectly set up a third fight with Diaz, this time at 155lbs with the belt at stake.