“There’s options,” Conor McGregor told the world’s MMA media as he sat before them at the UFC 205 post-fight press conference. “There always is many options after these events. I’m happy with that – options are always a good thing.”
It wasn’t the first time that McGregor had expressed such sentiment after a fight, but the wealth of options laying in front of him following the dramatic events of that weekend and his destructive display against Eddie Alvarez at ‘The Garden’ is greater than it has ever been.
There are a host of worthy challengers at lightweight, where he is now the champion, like Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson, as well as McGregor’s old foe Nate Diaz. There is also the possibility of a long-awaited return to featherweight, where the challenge of Jose Aldo looms. Or, if the UFC decide to allow McGregor to continue torturing the great Brazilian, he could even fight the winner of Anthony Pettis vs Max Holloway. Then, there is the potential for yet another daring leap up to welterweight and a shot at Tyron Woodley’s title, the seeds of which were sown with McGregor’s altercations with Woodley on the Friday before UFC 205.
— MMAFighting.com (@MMAFighting) November 11, 2016
Due to the fact that his girlfriend is pregnant, it seems as though McGregor will be taking a break until May of next year. However, not everyone is convinced that the hyperactive two-weight champion can wait that long. Lengthy break or not though, the speculation about who will be on the opposite side of the octagon when he does step back into action is intense.
When McGregor’s striking coach Owen Roddy appeared on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour, host Ariel Helwani asked the Dubliner who he would like to see ‘The Notorious’ one fight next.
“Maybe Woodley,” said “Rowdy” Roddy. “For me, for him to go up and go for three belts, maybe Woodley.”
“Diaz again is another great one because I think it’s what fans would want to see. They want to see something special again. The Diaz fight again is special. The Woodley fight is special.”
Roddy didn’t sound convinced that a showdown with the lightweight division’s number one contender, the aforementioned Khabib Nurmagomedov, would be of the same magnitude as bouts with Diaz or Woodley. Although he did say that the Russian would present the SBG team with a new set of problems to solve.
McGregor vs Nurmagomedov is an “interesting” rather than a “special” fight, suggested Roddy.
“You can’t really doubt Khabib at this stage,” he said. “He’s a phenomenal grappler, a phenomenal wrestler but I don’t know whether the excitement is there.”
“Obviously for Conor it’s about the pay-per-views. It’s about the money. Whether Khabib will hit the pay-per-views for him, I don’t know but he’s definitely there or thereabouts. He poses a different threat, so it would be good to try and work out the strikes that are going to land on him. He can be hit as well, I will say that. He got hit a bit in his last fight and, the same again, I believe that if you give Conor a chance to land once, I don’t know whether people can come back from that. But it would definitely be an interesting fight.”
Another fight that could present a new and interesting set of problems for the McGregor camp would be a boxing match with Floyd Mayweather. Asked if would like to see that frequently discussed but seemingly improbable match-up, Roddy responded with a simple question of his own – “Why not?”
“These extravaganza’s, something so special like that, who wouldn’t want to see something like that. And I’d love to be part of it, you know what I mean?. But who knows? I still find it difficult to see it happening but if anyone can pull it off and make it happen, Conor can.”
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