Prior to the now-infamous events of UFC 223’s fight-week, the UFC were reportedly looking at bringing four of the sport’s biggest names together for a tournament that would have been unlike anything they have ever done before.
UFC 223’s fight week may well go down as one of the craziest times in the history of mixed martial arts for a number of reasons but above all others was the almost surreal skirmish involving the former lightweight champion of the world, Conor McGregor, and the man who would eventually go on to claim his vacant 155lb strap, Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Of course, the event itself was overshadowed by the week that preceded it but according to reports made by Ariel Helwani of MMAFighting, the UFC had plans in place to put together a four-man tournament containing in it some of the biggest names the sport has ever know.
The plan, as reported by Helwani, included an opening matchup between Georges St-Pierre and Nate Diaz on August 4 in Las Vegas before a fight between Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor would happen in the fall.
A final showdown between the winner of each of those fights would then be booked before year’s end.
It would have been the type of scenario that MMA fans around the world could only dream of and while it may yet still happen in one form or another, the idea of what could have been had the Irishman McGregor not lost his head in Vegas will be a constant frustration as the year goes on.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena