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Ariel Helwani says Tony Ferguson is unlikely to be booked for UFC 256

UFC 229 Khabib v McGregor: Weigh-Ins
UFC 229 Khabib v McGregor: Weigh-Ins
Dhruv Sharma
CONTRIBUTOR
Modified 17 Nov 2020, 15:35 IST
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Tony Ferguson has been keen to make his way back to the Octagon ever since suffering a 5th round TKO loss against Justin Gaethje at UFC 249.

The TUF 13 winner has always been an active fighter, and ever since Khabib Nurmagomedov’s shock retirement at UFC 254, Tony Ferguson has been making a case to main event UFC 256.

However, if ESPN's Ariel Helwani is to be believed, the former interim lightweight champion will not be stepping inside the Octagon again in 2020.

Helwani revealed on the latest episode of DC & Helwani that while Tony Ferguson has been begging to be added to the UFC 256 card, his appearance on the card seems highly unlikely.

Accordong to Helwani, Tony Ferguson is getting no response from the UFC.

"Here's Tony Ferguson begging to be added [to UFC 256] and I don't think he's going to be added...He's getting no response and I'm told that he's hitting a brick wall," Helwani said.

Tony Ferguson had previously shown interest in fighting UFC newcomer and former Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler.

Chandler had also called out Ferguson when news of the Dustin Poirier – Conor McGregor fight broke out.

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With the state of the UFC's 155-pound division currently uncertain, all the contenders are looking to make their respective cases a shot at the crown.

Tony Ferguson was scheduled to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 249

It seemed at the start of the year that the seemingly-cursed fight between Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov would finally take place.

However, with the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and eventual travel restrictions put in place, the bout was canceled for the sixth time.

With Khabib unable to travel, Tony Ferguson instead took on Justin Gaethje for the interim title. Ferguson ended up losing the bout in the fifth round, snapping his 12-fight win streak in the UFC.

Gaethje went on to face Nurmagomedov for the undisputed UFC lightweight championship back in October at UFC 254. Khabib would finish the fight via second-round submission and then retire from mixed martial arts.

Ever since Nurmagomedov's announcement, people have started to discuss who would be the next UFC lightweight champion.

Analysts and bookmakers alike have declared the race wide open, with top contenders such as Conor McGregor, Justin Gaethje, Tony Ferguson, Dustin Poirier, and Michael Chandler all having a decent chance of fighting for the title.

Published 17 Nov 2020, 15:35 IST
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