Conor McGregor says that he is interested in a rematch against Khabib Nurmagomedov, one that would give him the chance to get revenge for his loss to the lightweight champion at UFC 229 last October.
McGregor made those comments in an interview with self-help guru Tony Robbins, in which he talked extensively about the brawl after his fourth-round submission loss to Nurmagomedov.
McGregor: ‘The War is Not Over’
The Irish fighter told Robbins that he felt like while he may have lost the match in the Octagon, he made the final statement in the melee afterwards.
“At the end of the day, I landed the final blow of the night, right on his brother’s eye socket,” McGregor told Robbins. “Although the match didn’t go my way, the fight went my way. And trust me when I tell you, Tony, this war is not over.”
McGregor went on to say that he would like a chance for a rematch with the champ.
“If this fight does not happen again, if it does not get reset, it’s on them,” McGregor said. “They’re running away. I’m here for the fight and here for the rematch.”
That’s quite a statement from McGregor (21-4), who made an announcement in March on Twitter that he would be retiring from professional mixed martial arts in order to focus his time on other ventures, possibly including his whisky brand, Proper No. Twelve.
At the time, UFC President Dana White seemed to think the decision made sense. But McGregor had claimed to be retiring before, and had recently been talking about wanting to return to the Octagon soon, leaving many to believe that the retirement wouldn’t stick.
McGregor now says that he wants to return to the UFC only when the company is willing to give him what he’s worth. The Irishman has long been UFC’s most marketable fighter, with UFC 229 generating more pay-per-view buys than any MMA event in history.
“I just want my worth,” McGregor told Robbins. “There’s a lot of politics in the game. The fight game is full of sharks. But I’m the f—ing whale, so I want what’s mine, and that’s what I’m gonna get: what I deserve.”
Brawl Overshadowed Khabib’s Win
Nurmagomedov (27-0) dominated most of the first fight with McGregor, cementing his place as one of the most dominant figures in MMA today. However, the fight is mostly remembered for the chaotic scene that unfolded after the official bout ended.
The brawl started moments after McGregor tapped out, when Nurmagomedov leaped over the Octagon walls to attack Dillon Danis, McGregor’s jiu-jitsu coach. McGregor then landed a blow on Abubakar Nurmagomedov, Khabib’s cousin, after which two of Numragomedov’s team members retaliated by coming into the Octagon to attack McGregor.
The actions resulted in both fighters receiving suspensions and fines from the Nevada State Athletic Commission. McGregor’s suspension recently ended in April, while Nurmagomedov will be eligible to fight again in July.
McGregor is still listed as the No. 3 ranked contender in the UFC’s lightweight division, but it is almost certain that he won’t be Nurmagomedov’s next opponent. Instead, the champion will likely look to reunify his title by facing off against interim champion Dustin Poirier (25-5).