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Dana White Has Clear Visions For McGregor And Woodley, But The Fighters May See Things Differently

UFC president Dana White attempted to part the clouds surrounding the future of the featherweight and welterweight divisions when he spoke to the promotion’s official website recently.

The title pictures in both weight classes have been shrouded in uncertainty as of late, with Conor McGregor’s refusal to relinquish the title despite his lofty ambitions elsewhere holding up championship activity at 145lbs and Tyron Woodley’s desire to make money threatening to force a deserving fighter out of immediate contention at 170lbs.

White however, has a clear vision of where both men are headed.

The 47-year-old told Matt Parrino that he expects McGregor to return to featherweight after his UFC 202 rematch with Nate Diaz, while he ruled out the possibility of Nick Diaz, one of the big name opponents that Woodley suggested for his first defence, getting a welterweight title shot upon his return from suspension. Instead, asserted White, the division’s number one contender Stephen Thompson would receive the opportunity he had earned with a recent win over Rory MacDonald.

“I fully expect Conor to come back and defend his 145-pound title,” White said. “I think that Nate feels his brother should have the fight at 170, but Nick is not going to come back and fight for the title right away.”

“There are other guys deserving of a title shot. Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson is going to fight for the 170-pound title and then we’ll see what happens with Nick and Nate.”

However, as confident as White may have seemed, neither Woodley nor McGregor are singing from his hymn sheet.

During the UFC 202 media conference call last week, McGregor seemed uninterested in a rematch with the man whom he defeated to scoop the gold last December, Jose Aldo.

“I spent so much time with that man and he pulled out,” said the Irish fighter(via MMAJunkie). “Then we finally got into it and it took me one shot to shut his lights out. So I don’t know what he’s thinking. Right now, I’m prepared for a war (with Diaz) and that’s that.”

McGregor lands the conclusive left-hand shot after only seconds of action at UFC 194
McGregor lands the conclusive left-hand shot after only seconds of action at UFC 194.

Of course, because Aldo bested Frankie Edgar over five rounds to claim the interim title at UFC 200, this is the fight that would await ‘The Notorious’ one were he to move back down.

At a media event in Las Vegas on Friday, McGregor was asked directly about White’s statement and his featherweight future. He was once again reluctant to commit.

“Yeah, I read that,” said the 28-year-old, before adding “we’ll see”.

McGregor did say later in the interview that he planned to defend the belt at some point, but he did not reveal a specific time frame.

Upon catching wind of White’s statement, Woodley took to Twitter and delivered the following message to his supporters.

The new welterweight champion also posted a screen shot of an interaction between he and former 170-pound kingpin Georges St-Pierre, who looks set to return in the near future.

With these two stubborn characters refusing to fully commit to White’s visions, his statement needs to be taken with a pinch of salt.

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Author: The PA Team

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