Conor McGregor Says Max Holloway UFC Rematch Fight 'Definitely in the Pipeline'

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJanuary 20, 2021

Conor McGregor motions to the crowd during a news conference for a UFC 246 mixed martial arts bout, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020, in Las Vegas. McGregor is scheduled to fight Donald
John Locher/Associated Press

UFC superstar Conor McGregor said a rematch with Max Holloway is "definitely" among the fights he'll consider on a path toward the lightweight championship following Saturday's clash with Dustin Poirier.

"He's definitely in the pipeline for the belt against me for sure," McGregor told Oscar Willis of TheMacLife in an interview released Wednesday. "I would happily rematch Max. And after a performance like that [to beat Calvin Kattar], he's put himself right up there."

McGregor and Holloway first faced off in August 2013 before they were two of the biggest names in MMA. The Notorious won that meeting by unanimous decision on the undercard of an encounter between Chael Sonnen and Mauricio Rua.

Holloway said before his victory over Kattar on Saturday he was also open to a rematch with McGregor.

"People consider him one of the best in the sport today, I can't wait," Holloway told reporters. "As a competitor, I would love to [get a rematch]. That's one of the fights that intrigues me. Like you said, we fought a long time ago, and he knows that, too."

McGregor appears poised to refocus on the UFC moving forward after entering the Octagon just twice since last 2016—a loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov in October 2018 and a win over Donald Cerrone last January.

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That will be some cause for optimism for Dana White and Co. with Khabib's future up in the air after he announced his retirement following a win over Justin Gaethje in October. Getting the 32-year-old McGregor back as a top draw on a consistent basis could help fill the void.

Of course, the word retirement doesn't carry much weight in the fight game. McGregor "retired" last year and he's already back in action, and Nurmagomedov is already back in the conversation too.

"If these guys can do something special, Khabib will fight them," White said about Saturday's lightweight fights—McGregor vs. Poirier and Dan Hooker vs. Michael Chandler.

McGregor's life outside the Octagon continues to provide concerns, however. On Tuesday, the New York Times reported a woman has filed a personal injury lawsuit that accuses McGregor of assaulting and raping her in December 2018 at a Dublin hotel. Irish police investigated the allegation but decided not to press charges, and McGregor has denied the allegations.

So there are a lot of variables in play in the division moving forward. It creates some uncertainty about whether a rematch between McGregor and Holloway will happen in the immediate future, if at all, but both fighters' willingness to discuss the possibility will provide some encouragement to the UFC.