Conor McGregor’s upcoming title challenge against UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo will be in Las Vegas, as expected, however talks of a May date appear to have been premature.
Immediately following McGregor’s recent win over Dennis Siver, UFC President Dana White announced that the promotion was targeting a slot around Memorial Day weekend for the Irishman’s blockbuster title fight. But McGregor’s head coach at SBG Ireland, John Kavanagh, said Tuesday that plans have now been pushed back to “mid-summer.”
“It’s not 100-percent yet. There was talk of a May date. It may now actually be later in the year,” Kavanagh told NewsTalk Breakfast. “I get a lot of tweets and messages, people wanting to book their flights. I would just say hold on, hold on until the UFC officially announces. But it does look like it’ll be later in the year.”
Kavanagh specifically mentioned July as a possible date for the fight.
A 26-year-old featherweight with a brash and loquacious style, McGregor (17-2) is undefeated in the UFC, with four of his five wins ending via TKO stoppage. All four of those finishes also earned McGregor post-fight bonuses for his work.
Following his most recent victory, an effortless second-round TKO over Siver earlier this month, McGregor vaulted into the audience and confronted Aldo (25-1) in the stands. The Brazilian champion, however, was unfazed by the encounter, only smiling and laughing at McGregor’s attempts to cause a scene.
Aldo has won 15 straight WEC/UFC fights and reigned over the featherweight division largely unchallenged since winning the belt with a second-round destruction of Mike Brown in Nov. 2009. Of late, he’s taken to styling himself as the ‘king’ of the division, while painting McGregor as his ‘fool.’
When asked if Aldo-McGregor was finalized for Las Vegas or there was still a chance the fight could be staged in Ireland, Kavanagh said, “I would certainly love [the fight] to be Ireland. Unfortunately, there’s a few problems. It would have to be in a stadium, maybe Croke Park.
“The problem with that is you have a curfew. 11 p.m. it has to all shut down. Whereas, they did a big event in Stockholm last weekend. But they didn’t start until 2 or 3 a.m. Stockholm time, pay-per-view time in the States. They have a massive drop in revenue and also the cost of setting up Croke Park with all the major screens.
“We’re hoping to go over there and win the belt, and then twist their arm a little bit more and get the first defense in Dublin.”