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McGregor's return: The most anticipated battle at UFC 302

McGregor's return: The most anticipated battle at UFC 302

The UFC makes McGregor 's return official: June 29 against Chandler


Dana White confirmed, in the press conference after UFC 300, that the Irishman will occupy the main event of the event that will take place in Las Vegas on June 29. Makhachev will return at UFC 301, 28 days before.


Dana White announced the news that had been suspected for some time


He read it from a page torn from a small notebook and after a pause accompanied by a mischievous smile. "On June 29, Conor McGregor vs. Michael Chandler. Five rounds at 170 pounds (77.1 kg, welterweight)," said the UFC boss before journalists present at the press conference after UFC 300 They started applauding.


Confirmation of the duel was expected this week


But it was a coup to do it right on the horn. They had missed the opportunity for the press conference at the event and White had given the post-show conference normally. In fact, he referred to the lawsuit. "Conor was too busy and there was no need to force him," he said. Once he finished, he told those present that he was going with several "notes" and made official the stars of UFC 302 (June 1) and UFC 303 (June 29).


In the first PPV of that month of June, the lightweight champion, Islam Makhachev, will return


Who will expose his crown against Dustin Poirier. The Russian will fight again in the United States after two years. The show will be in New Jersey and will co-star the duel between Sean Strickland and Paulo Costa. The duel is also five rounds, so it is expected that the winner can be the next challenger to the middleweight title.


Regarding UFC 302, White gave all the information that was missing


The event will take place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on June 29, something that was already known. McGregor and Chandler will close the day with a five-round, non-title fight, in which they will have to fight at welterweight. The issue of the scale was one of the hot points. The Irishman has grown a lot during his inactivity and reaching 155 pounds (70.3 kg, lightweight) seemed impossible. At the moment the only thing that remains to be known is if there will be any prior promotional event. The PPV will close the UFC's most important week of the year, the International Fight Week, where its main faces have events with the public and celebrate, among many other things, the induction into the Hall of Fame.


McGregor vs Chandler, a year of waiting


The news of the duel between McGregor and Chandler has been a long time coming. Last February the UFC notified that the two fighters would be the coaches of their reality show. The logical thing, once the program ends, is that the two coaches face each other. Everything pointed to September 2023, but the deadlines became excessively long. The Irishman, 35 years old (he will be 36 in June), has not fought since July 2021, when he ended up injured. He had a tibia fracture that kept him away from the sport for a long time. During that period of time, as usual, he was removed from the USADA system. That is, he did not pass anti-doping controls.

The USADA needed six months of a fighter on its list to qualify him to fight. That's where the problems began. McGregor wanted an exception and USADA did not give it. The tension reached such a level that the UFC decided to break relations with the organization and since January 2024 hired another entity to be in charge of anti-doping controls. The tug of war progressively delayed the duel and entered 2024.

UFC 300 was the indicated date, but McGregor was not prepared. He made a movie and needed more time. There was talk of September, but it will finally be June 29 (date that his coach brought forward in January) when he returns. He has moved the times as he wanted and his rival, 37 years old (he turns 38 this month), has had to resign himself. The financial prize will be worth it. The Notorious is back and that means big business.


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