John Kavanagh has revealed that Conor McGregor is already back in the gym and is pushing for a return date this summer.
While Conor McGregor has relocated to Dubai to regroup after his TKO defeat to Dustin Poirier at UFC 257, he availed of the gym on board the yacht to get an upper-body workout in the very next day.
John Kavanagh, McGregor’s long-time head coach, remains optimistic that the UFC sees the pay-per-view potential of a rubber match between ‘The Notorious’ and ‘The Diamond’ and books it as soon as possible.
“He’s already looking for the next date which we hope to get sooner rather than later,” Kavanagh told Ariel Helwani.
“He was pressing for a busy 2020 and nothing’s changed. He wants a busy 2021 so I hope we can get the rematch (vs. Poirier). That would be the ideal!
“If it’s not that then I’m not sure what it would be – whether it’s a different MMA fight or a boxing fight – I’m not too sure of that.”
Poirier remains open to a few options for his next bout and with the increasing likelihood of Khabib Nurmagomedov staying retired, a scenario in which the UFC lightweight title isn’t contested by Poirier next time around is essentially unfathomable.
While many view the completion of the trilogy with Nate Diaz as the more logical option for McGregor’s next outing, Kavanagh is hoping that the Poirier bout comes first.
“He’s already harassing everybody to get the rematch,” Kavanagh continued. “We would love the rematch. I don’t think Dustin is against that.
“If we could get the rematch before the summer, that would be amazing. If it’s not to be then I guess I don’t really know.
“Maybe he drifts off into the boxing side so if the MMA community can help me out and get behind me and pester the UFC to give him another fight sooner rather than later so I don’t lose him for six months to boxing, I’d appreciate that.
“We’re 1-1 with Poirier and we gave him the rematch after the first win and I hope he returns the sentiment.”
Kavanagh has vowed to address the technical issues encountered by McGregor, specifically the kick to the lead calf of his fighter which turned out to be the story of the rematch.
The SBG head coach has earmarked May as a potential date for the third and deciding contest between Poirier and McGregor, with the UFC lightweight title on the line.
Kavanagh concluded: “It’s one apiece. They’re right up there in the rankings, they’re very popular fighters and I think, stylistically, it’s a beautiful match-up to watch. I’d love to see lots and lots of rounds of the two of them.
“Obviously Dustin is riding high with confidence now and with the more experience and added weight, he was able to take some of those shots. I’m sure his confidence is super-high at the moment.
“We have to fix that technique with the leg and watch out for a couple of other things as well.
“But Dustin vs. Conor III for the belt in maybe May or something like that, wouldn’t that be amazing?”