McGregor won a shot at the belt by drubbing Dennis Siver at UFC Fight Night 59 last week in Boston. Immediately after, White indicated the title fight was likely to happen in Las Vegas in May.
“We’re looking at May in Vegas (for Aldo vs. McGregor),” said White at the UFC Fight Night 59 post-fight press conference.
It sounds like Las Vegas is still in the plans, but a May date has become sketchy. McGregor’s coach, John Kavanagh, on Tuesday said that it now appears a summer date is more likely.
“It’s not 100 percent yet,” Kavanagh said of the fight’s date in a morning interview on Dublin radio station Newstalk 106-108 FM. “There was talk of a May date. It may now actually be later in the year.”
If not May, then when? Kavanagh seemed to be pointing to UFC 189, which takes place during the promotion’s International Fight Week in Sin City.
“Mid-summer, maybe,” he said. “In Vegas, fighting capital of the world.”
McGregor and his team had been pushing for the fight to take place at the massive Croke Park outdoor stadium in Dublin, but those plans were nixed when White said that it just wasn’t feasible at this time, in large part due to the fact that Dublin has an 11 p.m. curfew.
“There’s a lot of obstacles for Croke Park: the time, they have a curfew at night where you can’t get permits to stay out that late, you lose about 25 to 30 percent on pay-per-view being in another country, the amount of money in production for Croke Park,” White explained. “I can guarantee you it’s gonna rain. I’m not a meteorologist, but I’ll bet you it’s gonna rain.”
Kavanagh understands the reasoning behind putting the kibosh on Croke Parke, but they’re not giving up on pressing for a future fight there.
“(The UFC) did a big event in Stockholm last weekend. But they didn’t start until 2 or 3 a.m. … pay-per-view time in the States. They have a massive drop in revenue and also the cost of setting up Croke Park,” he said. “(But) we’re hoping to go (to Vegas) and win the belt, and twist their arm a little bit more and get the first defense in Dublin.”
For now, however, it appears that it will be a while before that can even be a consideration, as we won’t likely see McGregor even get his shot at the belt until summertime.