Wherever he goes and whatever he does there’s a never ending stream of discussion surrounding Conor McGregor. Today we list his most likely opponents for his next UFC bout, and how the odds might line-up.
5. Conor McGregor vs. Max Holloway 2 (Most likely at Lightweight)
The least likely on the list is the Hawaiian Max “Blessed” Holloway. These two have squared-off once already way back in August of 2013, at Featherweight.
Holloway came in as the +250 underdog, and looked every bit of it as McGregor had his way with him on the feet. Later in the fight, McGregor suffered an injury which forced the Irishman to go for an uncharacteristic wresting approach, to see out the fight, and win by unanimous decision.
Both Fighters have come a long way since then, McGregor claimed his “double champ” status, and then Holloway claimed the Featherweight title, and has dominated the division ever since.
Holloway has already stepped up to lightweight take on Dustin Poirier unsuccessfully, although he hasn’t ruled out a return to the division if the fight is right. With McGregor probably now unable to make the weight cut down to 145lbs, I’d be very surprised if this were to take place at any division other than 155lbs.
I’d open this at a near pick’em, with McGregor as the very slight favorite to soak up some of the public money that’d pour in on him. Worth noting that BetStars already have this lined at a dead -117 Pick’em.
Conor McGregor (-120) vs. Max Holloway (-115)
4. Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz 3 (Either Lightweight or Welterweight)
This fight stands a pretty good chance of being made, but potentially not just as quickly as the top three on this list.
McGregor and Diaz have faced off twice before at 170lbs. This was due to Diaz winning their first bout as a late notice replacement, so they agreed to hold the fight at welterweight. After the loss, McGregor wanted to get his win back over Diaz under the same circumstances, so this included the rematch taking place at WW once again.
Both fighters seem to dance around whether they ever want to compete against each other a third time, but there’s no mistaking that they both know they can win, and that it’d be extremely lucrative for both parties, as well as the UFC.
If they were to complete their trilogy, I’d guess they’d do it at WW, so that all the variables would be kept the same. It’s also worth noting that Nate Diaz has already stressing he has no desire to cut weight back down to 155lbs again, so that could also play into this. That being said, McGregor may see it as advantageous for this their 3rd fight to take place at lightweight, but only time will tell if and at what weight class this would take place.
I’d have McGregor as the favorite in both, more so at lightweight, as the weight cut would likely be to his benefit. At this point people fear about McGregor’s commitment to the sport, but Diaz isn’t getting any younger, and questions are being asked of his interest in fighting too. Here’s how I’d have the fight lined:
Welterweight: Conor McGregor (-182) vs. Nate Diaz (+130)
Lightweight: Conor McGregor (-200) vs. Nate Diaz (+140)
3. Dustin Poirier vs. Conor McGregor 2 (Lightweight Title)
There’s starting to be a trend with this list, all the people so far have already faced McGregor.
Dustin Poirier lost back in September of 2014 to McGregor, whilst the Irishman was on his way to the top. It came early in the first round, and at that time Poirier was making a difficult cut down to featherweight. It was a cut that ultimately hindered his ability to weather his opponents’ power, as well as manage his stamina. Now Poirier’s gone through a major resurgence at Lightweight, where he has now claimed the interim lightweight title.
He currently has a fight lined up with the undisputed lightweight champ Khabib Nurmagomedov as the headline for UFC: 242 on September 7th. If Poirier we to come out victorious, it is very likely this would offer McGregor and opening to step back in the octagon once again to contend for a UFC title.
I’d line McGregor as the fav, with DP paying out at even-money. I’d personally favor Poirier and would realistically have this line flipped the other way, but the money that’d be on McGregor is always going to have a substantial bearing on how his fights are lined.
Conor McGregor (-138) vs. Dustin Poirier (+100)
2. Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Conor McGregor 2 (Lightweight Title)
This makes it four for four of McGregor rematches. Personally I think there’s no-way this should go down unless Conor got a couple of wins under his belt first, but what the Notorious one wants... he generally gets.
If McGregor feels like he’s ready to step back up to the plate, there’s a reasonable chance the UFC might afford him another shot at Khabib, should the Russian defeat Poirier at UFC: 242 (as the -357 favorite). Tony Ferguson has been patiently waiting for his shot, but when the UFC’s biggest cash cow comes knocking, they’ve sidelined “El Cucuy” in the past to let McGregor get his shot, and it’s entirely likely that could happen again.
I’d have Khabib listed as the modest favorite, but still not quite as much as oddsmakers currently have him, due to the masses of public money that would pile in on McGregor at +300.
Khabib Nurmagomedov (-250) vs. Conor McGregor (+170)
1. Conor McGregor vs. Jose Aldo 2 (Most Likely at Lightweight)
To complete the list, we have his current most talked about potential match-up. Recently it was rumored that the long awaited rematch between McGregor and the featherweight king Jose Aldo, would go down. With McGregor there’s always speculation over everything, but it’s impossible to look past this as it’s currently the most talked about.
Their first fight ended with a shocking thirteen second KO in favor of McGregor, the fastest in UFC title fight history. It was a historic win, and one that shocked the world, notifying everyone that Conor McGregor was as legitimate as he claimed. His win was just about as perfect as he could have wished for, it even makes you wonder why he’d even take the rematch, as he couldn’t have done it any better the first time.
Although I don’t see that same circumstance unfolding again, I would edge him out as a near 2-to-1 favorite over his long-time rival.
Conor McGregor (-190) vs. Jose Aldo (+130)
I guess like many of the fights on this list, he’s already won them, or he stands more to gain from the rematch than giving a new competitor the “rub” of fighting him. There’s no real way of knowing who exactly will be next, but I’m sure many of us will be watching.