UFC 159 suffered a blow earlier today when it was revealed that Joe Proctor has been scratched from the card. Proctor was scheduled to take on Al Iaquinta in a lightweight contest, and his withdraw has left the former Ultimate Fighter runner-up without an opponent.
As luck would have it, the UFC has at least one willing replacement for Proctor; rising star Conor McGregor has offered to step in.
McGregor, who debuted with the promotion earlier this month, would have to forfeit a full training camp and make the jump up from 145 pounds, which was his fighting weight at UFC on Fuel 9, in order to accommodate the bout.
But, according to his recent Twitter post, he's ready and willing to do just that:
April 27th New Jersey!!! 155lbs versus a TUF finalist!!! WHO WANTS TO SEE IT?— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) April 11, 2013
The lack of prep time and the jump in weight would seem to hamper McGregor's chances of repeating the success he found in his first fight under the UFC banner, but it may not be as far-fetched a proposition as it looks at first glance.
The Irishman has past experience fighting at lightweight, and expressed his intentions of competing at 155 even before news broke of the UFC 159 opening. Furthermore, McGregor left his recent match with Marcus Brimage more or less unscathed, so it isn't as though he needs to undergo any lengthy recovery process to heal.
Whether or not the UFC goes for McGregor's proposal is the real catch, but time is short, and there is rarely a lineup of of fighters clamoring to compete on two weeks' notice.
So while it's uncertain whether his bosses will unleash McGregor for another turn in the Octagon, we should learn the outcome of the situation sooner rather than later, because there is most definitely an expiration date on saving Iaquinta's spot on the fight card.