Conor McGregor has explained why he is fighting Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone at 170 lbs ahead of their welterweight bout at UFC 246 in Las Vegas next weekend.
McGregor’s last bouts in the UFC, against Khabib Nurmagomedov and Eddie Alvarez have been at lightweight (155 lbs). The last time he fought at welterweight (170 lbs) was in his back-to-back clashes with Nate Diaz in 2016.
Speaking to Ariel Helwani on ESPN, McGregor explained that Cerrone doesn’t “look well” at 155 lbs and that he doesn’t want ‘Cowboy’ to “suffer” in making the cut.
“I know I could have [made Cerrone cut down to lightweight]. But I just don’t think he looks well at 155lbs. He does not look well at 155lbs. He’s a 170lb fighter.”
“Why would I want someone to suffer? I don’t care. No. I beat him any bleedin’ way. I beat him at any weight. I beat him bleedin’, you know what I mean?
“I beat him if I have the flu. So I don’t need that. I just want to focus on my training and keep me sharp. You know, I don’t have to cut and then build and then cut. I’m happy where I’m at.”
‘The Notorious’ also revealed his excitement at fighting at welterweight.
“170 is an exciting one for me,” McGregor said. “I like 170. I like what’s going on in the 170 division at the minute.
“You’ve got Jorge [Masvidal] with that belt, you’ve got the other guys [Colby Covington and Kamaru Usman] fighting for the belt.
“I like what’s going on at 170 and I feel good at 170. I feel energetic. It’s what I weigh. And that’s it. It opens up so many more options.”
"Will the real Conor McGregor please stand up" 👏👇https://t.co/QLfkqTF2JM
— Pundit Arena (@PunditArena) January 10, 2020
McGregor confirmed that he’s currently weighing in at “160lbs and a bit” and also confirmed that he has unfinished business at 155 lbs.
We’ll get to hear more from both fighters next week after the UFC confirmed the details of the pre-fight press conference.
You can watch the full interview below: