Croke Park may be next for McGregor
Conor McGregor could be preparing for a UFC bout in front of a home crowd soon as the president and vice president of the organisation said it was a strong possibility after he won his latest fight.
McGregor who became the first ever fighter in the sport to simultaneously hold two belts as he added the lightweight title to his existing featherweight one after a second round knockout victory against Eddie Alvarez in New York on Saturday night. And after the fighter announced he’s expecting his first child with longterm girlfriend Dee Devlin, it looks like he may well be entertaining a Dublin crowd in the near future.
In the post-fight conference Dana White, UFC president said: “Nobody walks out of the octagon and says that they want to turn right around and fight again,”
White said of McGregor’s enthusiasm before discussing what’s next. “We talk about Croke Park, we’ve been talking about that forever.”
Logistics would need a fairly big discussion, as the fight would need to go out at about midnight Irish time in order to meet the prime time viewing of an American audience.
And UFC Executive Vice President Gary Cook has revealed that the powers that be are exploring the possibility of The Notorious fighting in Croke Park or the Aviva next summer. “We are looking at something very special”, Cook told the Sunday World.
“Talks have taken place over the prospect of hiring Croke Park or the Aviva Stadium for a possible world title fight against the Brazilian champion Jose Aldo next summer.
“Conor is an athlete who is capturing the imagination of the Irish public and the prospect of hiring a huge outdoor stadium to stage a fight that will put him and the sport on the map is exciting all of us.
“After the success of the event we staged at the O2 Arena in Dublin earlier this year, we believe we can sell a lot of tickets for this fight. So long as everything goes okay with Conor’s next bout, it should be all systems go for next summer.”
Cook also praised the success of the 02 event stating: “Dana White, who has long been the face of UFC and an Irish- American himself, told me that the event we put on in Dublin was the most thrilling he has ever witnessed in the history of the sport.
“The noise of the crowd and the spectacle generated by Conor and the other fighters was just incredible and to move our sport forward to the next level, we want to tap into the enthusiasm this wonderfully talented sportsman has generated.”
Meanwhile bookmaker Paddy Power have given odds as low as 4-6 for the world champion to fight in Croke Park before the end of 2018.
They’re also offer 2-1 for the Crumlin man to take an extended break from UFC next year and reckon Nate Diaz is favourite to be his next opponent at 11-10.