Dana White, on the precipice of the premier of The Ultimate Fighter Season 31, has declared Conor McGregor not just a UFC superstar, but a global phenomenon. Well, he also had a few nice things to say about Michael Chandler, McGregor’s opposing coach on TUF.
It still remains to be seen when McGregor and Chandler will actually step into the octagon to fight each other. But in the meantime, White is hyping their coaching stints on TUF 31, which debuts on ESPN+ and ESPN on Tuesday, May 30.
In the latest teaser to the show, White introduces McGregor and Chandler to the audience, just in case you hadn’t heard of one or the other.
Conor McGregor tells Michael Chandler fight will be at middleweight
Dana White intros Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler on TUF 31
Joe Rogan has been around the UFC as long as anyone. So when it comes time to address some major moves surrounding the world’s MMA juggernaut, people stop and listen to him.
Rogan’s time with the UFC predates even company president Dana White. So when Francis Ngannou exited the promotion with the heavyweight belt, Alex Pereira bolted on an Israel Adesanya MMA trilogy, and Alex Volkanovski and Yair Rodriguez got booked to unify the featherweight belts, of course Rogan had to weigh in.
Listen in as Rogan laments Ngannou’s exodus and eventual signing with the PFL. He also addresses just why he thinks Pereira refused another Adesanya rematch. And he also addresses what promises to be a blistering featherweight championship fight.
Dana White: Francis Ngannou PFL deal doesn’t make any sense
Joe Rogan on Ngannou, Pereira, and Volkanovski vs. Rodriguez
Dana White is still targeting the monumental Conor McGregor vs. Michael Chandler fight for the end of 2023. There is a looming hurdle to clear, but White still appears focused on getting The Ultimate Fighter Season 31 coaches into the Octagon before the year is over.
Conor McGregor has to get back in the pool
For his part, McGregor has been slow to re-enter the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency’s testing pool for UFC athletes. That is a requirement. But not only does McGregor have to be in the pool, he has to be in it for six months and provide clean results for all tests.
As of Monday, the day before the premier of TUF 31 on ESPN+ and ESPN, McGregor has not shown up in USADA’s testing history for UFC athletes in 2023. There also has been no public announcement by McGregor, USADA, or the UFC that the Irishman is, as of yet, back in the pool.
The UFC is targeting an event at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in December. The promotion typically holds such an event annually within the first couple weeks of the month. So McGregor would have to re-enter testing by early June to make that timeframe.
TUF 31 achieves a new milestone on ESPN
Until then, the focus is on the much hyped season of The Ultimate Fighter with McGregor and Chandler providing some “heated” moments throughout.
Season 31 is the first season of TUF to air on the ESPN channel. ESPN+ has hosted recent seasons of the venerable reality series, but it will be simulcast this season, marking another milestone in the show’s history.
Conor McGregor tells Michael Chandler fight will be at middleweight
Dana White discusses Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler friction on TUF
Sitting at the top of the game, Amanda Nunes was essentially on cruise control, defeating the top women across the sport of mixed martial arts. But then Julianna Peña upset her in one of the more surprising upsets in recent memory.
Peña may have been on top of the world following that victory, which caused Nunes to consider walking away, but it only served to re-awaken the Lioness inside of Nunes.
Why Amanda Nunes opted not to retire
Heading into her UFC 289 headlining bantamweight title defense opposite Irene Aldana, Nunes spoke with UFC commentator Jon Anik. She recounted her loss to Peña, her decision to backtrack on retirement, and the renewed vigor with which she approaches the remainder of her career.
Following her UFC 269 loss to Peña, Nunes told her longtime coach and friend Din Thomas, “I think I’m done.” Lucky for her, he told Nunes to take time to think about it and call him later.
She did and the result wasn’t simply that she wouldn’t retire. In fact, Nunes says she couldn’t retire knowing that Peña had the belt. She also found a way to reinvigorate a career that had put her into too much of a comfort zone.
“I cannot leave my belt with Julianna. And can be somebody else, but (not) her,” Nunes recounted. “She does not deserve that belt.”
Surprisingly, that didn’t just lead Nunes to continuing her career, but to also shaking up her training. Having spent eight years with American Top Team, Nunes realized that she was too comfortable. She needed to find the hunger that drove her to becoming the UFC’s first female dual-division titleholder.
Nunes left American Top Team, creating her own training camp
Nunes talked to her supporters at American Top Team and struck out on her own, not because ATT wasn’t good for her, but because she needed a new challenge, a new way to put herself back on the hunt.
“Nothing was wrong (at ATT), I just want to move on, to see what is there on my own,” Nunes explained.
“We did it together, but something in my heart, in my mind, tell me it’s time to move on. That was the right time to move on. I got back home and put everything together. I was out of my comfort zone. This is how I want to be. I want to be threat; I want to be dangerous.”
After having won the UFC bantamweight and featherweight belts, defending both several times, she felt too comfortable. She did that with someone else’s team, now it’s time to put it all on the line and see what she can build on her own.
Of course, she’s built a team of support. No fighter does this alone, but now it’s in her purview to make it all come together. And it appears to have worked, as Nunes was in her own camp ahead of recapturing the bantamweight belt from Peña last year at UFC 277.
She’s now in her second camp since leaving ATT, heading into the showdown with Aldana at UFC 289 on June 10 in Vancouver, British Columbia. And by her accounts, it’s going well.
RELATED VIDEOS: Watch Amanda Nunes recapture gold from Julianna Peña 👊 UFC Fight Video Watch Irene Aldana earn title shot with Macy Chiasson KO 👊 UFC Fight Video
As the newest season of The Ultimate Fighter prepares for launch, Conor McGregor declared that his fight with Michael Chandler will be at 185 pounds.
In a TUF excerpt posted to ESPN’s MMA channel on YouTube, the clip shows the initial meeting of McGregor and Chandler for TUF. McGregor enters the room in a dark suit, arms swinging as they always do in his trademark swagger.
Conor McGregor drops 185-pound bomb on Michael Chandler
The meeting is amicable enough, but quickly falls prey to McGregor’s smooth trash talk, which always captures any conversation.
“I’m actually really looking forward to a proper fight,” McGregor said, as he and Chandler puffed their chests at each other in a sort of verbal feeling out period.
After asking for Chandler’s fight predication, McGregor asks, “Have I told you what weight it’s gonna be? 185.”
“You wanna do 185, I’ll do 185,” Chandler bites, not skipping a beat.
“You’ll do what you’re told,” McGregor snaps back. “This is my game. This my game forever.”
Chandler, a former Bellator lightweight champion, hasn’t fought above a 160-pound catchweight since very early on in his career. Moving up to 185 pounds would be a rather significant move for him.
McGregor, who hasn’t fought since suffering a devastating leg injury in a loss to Dustin Poirier nearly two years ago, has ballooned in size during his rehab. He has often shown photos and videos of his enlarged physique on social media, and has frequently mentioned an eventual move to middleweight.
When will McGregor be eligible to fight Chandler or anyone?
But is now really that time? We’ll obviously learn a lot more in the coming months as The Ultimate Fighter season plays out and McGregor and Chandler settle the date, the weight, and other details for the post-TUF fight.
For now, however, we await McGregor’s return to the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency testing pool for UFC fighters, which he has to be in and remain clean for six months before he can fight anyone. So we are left to live with his bluster and wonder when the return will come.
Conor McGregor and Canelo Alvarez latest MMA vs. Boxer spat
Conor McGregor tells Michael Chandler they are fighting at 185 pounds
PRESS RELEASE – TOKYO — Following last year’s historic New Year’s Eve co-promotion, BELLATOR MMA and RIZIN Fighting Federation will bring another industry-altering, star-studded event to fight fans in Japan on Sunday, July 30. Headlining the event, which departs from the head-to-head format of last year’s iteration of the crossover card, will be a Bellator Lightweight World Grand Prix Quarterfinal matchup between former Featherweight World Champion AJ McKee (20-1) and ex-Lightweight World Champion Patricky Pitbull(24-11).
In addition to the highly anticipated clash between McKee and the second of his Pitbull family foes, former BELLATOR and RIZIN champion Kyoji Horiguchi (31-5) will return to fight on home soil when he fights for the inaugural BELLATOR Flyweight World Championship against Makoto “Shinryu” Takahashi (16-1-1), who enters the bout on a blazing hot, ten-fight winning streak.
Plus, Japan’s own Kana Watanabe (11-2-1) puts her No. 3 flyweight ranking on the line former title challenger Veta Arteaga (7-5), who ranks No. 7.
Fans in attendance at the historic Saitama Super Arena will get to watch both portions of the event with the BELLATOR fights taking place in the cage with the iconic red and blue BELLATOR gloves, plus white gloves for the World Grand Prix competitors. The BELLATOR contests will be adhere to the Unified Rules of MMA.
The RIZIN FF fights will be taking place in their normal ring, and BELLATOR stars Juan Archuleta (28-4) and Tofiq Musayev (20-5) are scheduled to compete during the RIZIN portion of the event.
Broadcast details and ticket information will be announced at a later date.
McKee, 28, is one of the most prominent faces of BELLATOR MMA, having competed under the promotion’s banner for the entirety of his impressive professional career. McKee reached the pinnacle of the sport in 2021 when he dethroned rival Patricio Pitbull, the brother of upcoming opponent Patricky, in the finale of the $ 1,000,000 Featherweight World Grand Prix to become the Featherweight World Champion. After their rematch, McKee moved north to the lightweight division, where he has proven his worthiness of the promotion’s No. 5 pound-for-pound status, besting Spike Carlyle and RIZIN champion Roberto Satoshi — the latter in the main event last year’s BELLATOR vs. RIZIN card — on his path to the Grand Prix. At BELLATOR X RIZIN 2, McKee will look to advance to a semifinal matchup against Alexander Shabliy by adding another Pitbull to his lengthy list of victories.
Seeking to put an end to the McKee saga in emphatic fashion for his family is former lightweight title holder Patricky Pitbull. BELLATOR’s all-time knockout leader, Pitbull is known throughout the sport as a fearsome striker with dangerous punching power. While he came up short against the prodigious Usman Nurmagomedov in his last outing, the sting of losing his title has only strengthened the hunger Pitbull has to reclaim the championship gold he wore across his waist. Armed with the knowledge of two outings against McKee fought by brother Patricio, Pitbull hopes to dispatch of the American in front of an adoring Japanese crowd this July 30.
Despite fighting at flyweight for much of his professional career, Japan’s Kyoji Horiguchi dominated the bantamweight division in both BELLATOR and RIZIN, becoming champion on the strength of his artful karate-based style and well-honed fight IQ. However, the desire to fight at 125 pounds has remained for the American Top Team-trained fighter, who has won two straight fights in dominant fashion — including a decision over Hiromasa Ougikubo on last year’s BELLATOR vs. RIZIN event. On July 30, Horiguchi will compete for the inaugural BELLATOR Flyweight World Championship as he ushers in a new division for the promotion, one sure to bolster the overall talent of the BELLATOR roster.
“Shinryu” will make his second appearance for the BELLATOR brand when he challenges Horiguchi in this championship bout. Originally from Miyagi, Japan, “Shinryu” has become a fan favorite in Japan over his impressive, young career. At just 22-years-old, He’s already secured championships from DEEP and CFFC and now hopes to add BELLATOR gold to his growing trophy room.
Dana White: Francis Ngannou PFL deal doesn’t make any sense
BELLATOR X Rizin 2: McKee vs. Pitbull
Lightweight World Grand Prix Quarterfinals: #5-AJ McKee (20-1) vs. #2-Patricky Pitbull (24-11)
Inaugural Flyweight World Championship:Kyoji Horiguchi (16-9) vs. Makoto “Shinryu” (16-1-1)
Women’s Flyweight Bout: #3-Kana Watanabe (11-2-1) vs. #7-Veta Arteaga (7-5)
UFC superstar Conor McGregor and boxing champion Canelo Alvarez are the latest in a growing number of mixed martial artist vs. boxer spats. The two recently jawwed about who could beat the other, all resulting in much ado about nothing.
Jon Jones vs. Tyson Fury gets Dana White endorsement
UFC heavyweight champion Jon Jones has been engaged in a verbal battle with heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury of late. For weeks, the two have been spitting at each other, becoming one of the only potential fights that garnered the endorsement of UFC president Dana White.
That verbal battle is likely to remain a war of words. Jones is adamant he would throttle Fury in the Octagon, while the boxer only wants to fight under the Marquess of Queensberry boxing rules. So the self-proclaimed baddest men on the planet want nothing to do with the other’s sport.
Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather came to fruition
McGregor, of course, is no stranger to verbal warfare, even garnering enough attention to conjure up an actual boxing match with pugilistic great Floyd Mayweather. That is certainly one mark in McGregor’s favor. As much as he spits fire, it often is backed up with action.
Even though he lost to Mayweather, the bout happened, and it shattered combat sports records left and right. The fight reportedly generated around 4.3 million pay-per-view buys and $ 600 million in total revenue with Mayweather taking home around an estimated $ 300 million and McGregor about $ 100 million.
It’s no wonder that Jones and Fury are taking shots at each other. If they could actually generate enough momentum to carry their fight into the Octagon or a boxing ring, the payday would be ostentatious, regardless of the outcome.
Could Conor McGregor vs. Canelo Alvarez become a reality?
The same could be said for McGregor and Alvarez. Though McGregor hasn’t compete very regularly of late and his record is questionable, he is a draw. And Alvarez is still considered in his prime and one of the biggest stars in the world of boxing.
It’s unlikely that Canelo vs. Conor could draw anywhere near the numbers that Mayweather vs. McGregor did, but even if their jawwing doesn’t produce a fight at some point in time, it elevates the stock of both men.
During a recent boxing event, McGregor was caught on camera saying, “I’m a southpaw. John Ryder’s a southpaw. Billy Joe Saunders is a southpaw. I’ve seen methods. I’ve seen things I do, and I know he’s waning. I’d fight Canelo no f**king problem.”
Canelo responded by saying he would beat McGregor with one hand behind his back.
McGregor, of course, could not let the feud fade away, responding in a since deleted Tweet, “Canelo, you little ginger sausage. I’d beat you with NO HANDS. Don’t forget.”
Though he likely deleted the Tweet because someone advised him that using the term “little ginger sausage” wasn’t exactly a good look, McGregor isn’t one to likely back away from the controversy. He is, after all, a social media magnet and highly skilled at creating enough controversy to keep the spotlight on him.
Jon Jones vs. Tyson Fury? Dana White down to make it happen
Conor McGregor vs. Michael Chandler is next… but when?
McGregor is supposed to return to the Octagon in late 2023 to fight fellow The Ultimate Fighter coach Michael Chandler in a highly anticipated bout.
The Irishman must first re-enter the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency UFC Athlete testing pool and provide clean results for six months before being deemed eligible to fight in the Octagon. Though USADA and McGregor have acknowledged that they have been discussing his re-entry, there have been no statements that he has done so, as of yet. There is also no record of him being drug tested by USADA in 2023.
The current target for McGregor vs. Chandler is rumored to be UFC 296 in December in Las Vegas. Whether that comes to fruition, we’ll have to wait and see, as time is running out on McGregor’s re-entry into the USADA testing pool.
Dana White updates on McGregor vs. Chandler
UFC president Dana White provided an update on Conor McGregor vs. Michael Chandler following UFC Vegas 73: Dern vs. Hill in May.
Alexander Volkanovski is the 145-pound GOAT and has beaten the likes of Max Holloway, Brian Ortega, Jose Aldo, and Chan Sung Jung but there’s one man he wished he could have faced …
… Conor McGregor.
“It’s pretty easy for me in saying Conor McGregor because he was in featherweight,” Volkanovski said on The MMA Fan Podcast. “He was a featherweight. We’ve got to remember the champions I’ve beat. I’ve beat every other champion in the featherweight division.
“The only champ I haven’t fought in the featherweight division is Conor McGregor. Conor McGregor in his prime in featherweight division would obviously be the all-time – I’m sure everyone would want to see that right now. If we could make that happen right now, somehow get prime Conor vs. prime Volk, it would be pretty special.”
When most people call out McGregor its for an easy payday, but that isn’t the reason Volkanovski wants the fight.
“Everyone’s going to talk about the money, and that’s why you only want that fight,” Volkanovski said. “Yeah, of course there’s money in it, the circus around it, the hype, all of that. But you talk about legacy, you know then I would have beaten every featherweight champion, and I plan on having the most defenses as well.”
Volkanovski looks to unify the featherweight title against interim champion Yair Rodriguez at UFC 290 on July 8.
Irene Aldana cemented her status as a top UFC bantamweight contender with this UFC 279 knockout of Macy Chiasson.
Aldana wasn’t the original opponent for champion Amanda Nunes at UFC 289. She was, however, ready and quick to step in when Julianna Peña was forced out of her trilogy bout with Nunes because of an injury.
Before Aldana faces Nunes UFC 289 in Canada, check out her UFC 279 finish of Chiasson.
Conor McGregor and Canelo Alvarez latest MMA vs. Boxer spat
Irene Aldana vs. Macy Chiasson | UFC 289 Free Fight
Uriah Hall is clearly still in his feelings about his viral KO of Adam Cella in 2012.
That point was made clear when a fan tagged Hall in a thread sharing insane knockouts and he responded, clearly on edge.
The fan wrote a comment on a highlight of the KO saying, “I think this was the knockout that made @UriahHallMMA scared of his own power. This looked scary as hell.”
Hall replied writing, “Lol I think you’re random dumb a** don’t know s*** and you should probably shut the f*** up and think before you tweet f***ing tool please tell me about my career and my wins and losses.”
A different fan stepped in to defend the comment writing, “Uriah i believe he was complimenting you” to which Hall fired back, “That’s not a compliment.”
The tweet went viral with fans defending the comment, and wondering why Hall came so hard for him.
Hall hasn’t competed in the UFC since his 2022 loss to André Muniz. He recently boxed on the Jake Paul vs. Tommy Fury card where he defeated Le’Veon Bell via decision.
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