Dana White has seemingly put any chances of us seeing a welterweight clash between Jorge Masvidal and Conor McGregor to bed in a recent interview with TMZ.
And while the UFC president has been known to go back on his word, a matchup between his biggest cash-cow and the powerful welterweight contender would likely represent quite a bit of risk for the company.
Masvidal’s stock is, of course, at an all-time high in the wake of his five-second knockout of Ben Askren in UFC 239 and now, it does appear as though he will be in line to face off against divisional champion Kamaru Usman before long.
All signs do seem to point to Conor McGregor making his return to the UFC octagon this year, and while the Irishman is currently nursing an injury to his left hand, a comeback sometime in Winter does seem to be the most likely prospect.
Conor has been tirelessly campaigning for a rematch against Khabib Nurmagomedov following their last meeting at UFC 229 – a fight that Dana seems to be surprisingly interested in making and in a recent interview with TMZ, he explained how the notion of a showdown against Gamebred will not be figuring into his plans.
“Masvidal is too big for Conor. Yeah, but he shouldn’t have [fought Nate Diaz at welterweight]. I hated that he did it. Not only did I hate that he did it once, I hated that he did it twice.
“He doesn’t belong at that weight. No. There’s plenty of fights for him in his weight division without Conor. He’s too big for Conor, Conor doesn’t belong at 170.
“He’s got the balls to fight at 170 but he doesn’t belong there. Hell no.”
Issues of conditioning derailed Conor first outing at 170lbs after he took on short-notice replacement Nate Diaz at UFC 196 – a fight he would go on to lose by way of second-round submission.
Masvidal would, of course, represent a different task entirely and power unlike anything the former two-weight world champion will have ever faced in his career.