Conor McGregor is confident that he and Dana White have put their differences behind them after a somewhat tempestuous 2020.
Dana White slammed Conor McGregor for releasing a series of direct messages with the UFC President in September in a stunt that White claimed was “one of the dirtiest things you can do.”
The DMs largely focused on McGregor’s desire to fulfil his 2020 fight season with a bout in Los Angeles before a clash with Diego Sanchez in August.
White recently admitted that the release of his private messages to millions of McGregor’s followers left him in a bad place but it appears that the pair have since patched things up, with ‘The Notorious’ due to return to the Octagon on January 23 for a much-anticipated rematch with Dustin Poirier.
“Me and Dana have always had an amazing relationship – more than fighter and promoter,” McGregor told The Mac Life. “I have a lot of respect for Dana and what he’s done in 2020 was nothing short of outstanding.
“I’ve commended him for that and I continue to commend him on that.
“There were pockets in the year where we were at loggerheads, if you will. But this is a high-pressure, high-stakes business and when you’ve got an Irishman looking for a fight, you better give him one or it may be you that’s involved in the fight.
“All is good, we hashed it out and we said our piece. We’re in a great spot now and I’m excited to come back for the company and kickstart 2021 in a major way.”
While McGregor is of the opinion that his upcoming rematch with Poirier ought to be for the UFC lightweight title, considering the fact that Khabib Nurmagomedov announced his retirement three months ago, the Irishman isn’t holding it against White for keeping the bout a non-title fight.
— UFC (@ufc) January 13, 2021
Nurmagomedov is expected to be in Abu Dhabi at the same time as McGregor as White hopes to be able to convince the undefeated Russian to compete one last time with the goal of closing out his career at 30-0.
“I feel it should be (on the line),” McGregor said of the UFC 257 main event. “But I don’t think Dana is going to be bouncing in to throw me a belt straight away after the way the year went. I understand that.
“What are the belts? I’m here to compete, get some good competition and the belts will come.
“I think maybe the next bout would be fair. I would have liked to had it for this fight but there were circumstances surrounding a man scurrying away to an extent. They’ve given him (Nurmagomedov) a bit of time.
“We’ll see what happens. It makes no odds to me. I’m not going to get caught up in the politics of this business because I’ve done that in the past and it’s hampered me.”