Additionally, Helwani noted that the UFC is open to booking Conor McGregor not only against Gaethje, but any other, fighter for that matter.
Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier had agreed to compete in a rematch
Earlier this year, both Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier had publicly agreed to face each other in a rematch that would take place on January 23rd, 2021.
Earlier this year, both Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier publicly agreed to a rematch. The two former champions initially planned to hold the rematch as a charity event, but the UFC stepped in and offered the two an official fight.
McGregor had bested Poirier via first-round TKO in their first encounter back in 2014.
Since their initial encounter, both fighters have charted their own paths to success in the UFC. McGregor eventually became a two-division champion in the promotion, while Poirier held the interim UFC lightweight championship and recently challenged for the world title.
The MMA community has been eagerly looking forward to the rematch between the two feared knockout artists.
However, Poirier recently claimed that the UFC has yet to send him an official contract for the McGregor fight.
Presently, the UFC, Conor McGregor, and Dustin Poirier have yet to officially finalize the contracts for their much-awaited rematch.
Justin Gaethje or another fighter could end up facing Conor McGregor
ESPN’s Ariel Helwani weighed in on this situation, and confirmed that the fight between Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier is not a done deal, saying that, as of this time, nothing has been signed. Helwani also explained that McGregor isn’t the reason behind this delay, but rather Poirier.
Apparently, Dustin Poirier is trying to secure a better deal for himself, which is why the October 24th, 2020 fight between Poirier and Tony Ferguson didn’t come to fruition.
“As a result, the UFC has said it would be willing to replace Poirier with Gaethje (or even another fighter), sources say. Of course, for this to happen, McGregor would have to be on board, and I'm not sure if he is, to be honest. That's because Gaethje is coming off a loss and because of things Gaethje has said about McGregor (specifically about McGregor as a father) in the past.”
Furthermore, Helwani explained that currently, Conor McGregor could turn out to be Dustin Poirier’s biggest ally. That’s because if McGregor has his sights set on the Poirier rematch and refuses to fight anyone else, the UFC would have to secure a deal with Poirier in order to ensure that McGregor returns to the Octagon.