After suffering a horrendous tibia break at UFC 264, the extent of Conor McGregor's medical layoff has been revealed.
Towards the end of the first round of his trilogy fight with Dustin Poirier, Conor McGregor can be seen taking a step back and putting his full weight on his rear leg, which promptly snaps in two. That kind of injury is something that is rarely, if ever, seen in the UFC. Thus, it stands to reason that McGregor will be out for a significant period of time.
According to MMA journalist Al Dawson, Conor McGregor will be out for the remainder of 2021, with January 2022 the closest we can hope to see him back in the octagon. The full report read:
"JUST IN: Conor McGregor has been given a medical suspension until January 7, 2022, unless he receives orthopedic clearance of his fractured left leg."
"Minimum suspension for six weeks, and no contact (sparring) until early to mid August, as per the combat sports regulator MMA."
Could Conor McGregor vs. Dustin Poirier 4 happen?
Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier have now completed their trilogy, with Poirier winning two of their three fights. However, we may yet see the two elite lightweights square off again in the UFC octagon due to the inconclusive nature of the most recent fight's stoppage.
But that fourth fight is likely to be at least a year off. This is naturally in part due to McGregor's medical suspension, but also because Dustin Poirier is now next in line to face UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira.
Comparatively, Conor McGregor has fallen to seventh in the UFC rankings. This likely means that he will need at least one win, if not two, over top-ranked 155lb opposition. It will be no easy feat to defeat one of these fighters due to the incredibly high talent level inside the UFC's lightweight division.
Justin Gaethje, Michael Chandler and Beneil Dariush are all incredibly tough fights for McGregor. However, a matchup against fifth-ranked Tony Ferguson may be a more favorable contest for the Irishman. Alternatively, a move back up to the welterweight division to complete his trilogy with Nate Diaz may also be on the cards.