Dana White Planning Jose Aldo vs. Conor McGregor in Las Vegas, Not Dublin

January 19, 2015
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It was known well before Conor McGregor ever set foot in the Octagon on Sunday night that if he defeated Dennis Siver, he would next face UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo in a battle for the belt.

There had been a lot of speculation that such a fight might take place at the 90,000-plus-seat Croke Park in Dublin were it to happen. Now that McGregor has earned the shot at Aldo, his vision of fighting at Croke Park has vanished.

SEE ALSO: Conor McGregor vs. Dennis Siver Fight Highlights Video

Conor McGregor v Jose Aldo crowd v2 750UFC president Dana White on Sunday night put to rest the idea that McGregor might challenge for the belt in front of the largest UFC audience ever and that being on his home turf. The fight has instead been penciled in for UFC 187 on May 23 in Las Vegas.

“We’re looking at May in Vegas (for Aldo vs. McGregor),” said White at the UFC Fight Night 59 post-fight press conference.

“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. I can guarantee you it’s gonna rain. I’m not a meteorologist, but I’ll bet you it’s gonna rain,” he explained.

“I’m not saying we’re never gonna do it, but Vegas for this one.”

Although it would appear logical that a massive stadium would make up the difference in pay-per-view losses, White said that wasn’t necessarily so when asked about it on Sunday night.

“So with 91,000 people there, you actually do a bigger gate in Vegas, probably two million dollars more,” said White. “Because when you’re in a stadium that big, the production costs (go up).

“We’ve got to put up big screens. We definitely got to build something to put over the Octagon because it will rain. There’s a lot of things that you have to do in an arena like that, that you wouldn’t do in Vegas.”

McGregor has made no secret of the fact that he sees himself one day fighting at Croke Park or another large venue in Dublin, he has no issues with challenging Aldo in Sin City.

“It’s absolutely perfect,” he said. “Of course, the stadium is a dream of mine, a vision of mine. But Vegas, I’m happy with Vegas. We’re going to go to Las Vegas and one more head will be collected.”

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  • battle ready

    Watching the fight I don’t have any doubt that Conor has some serious talent. However, Siver wasn’t really a serious test IMO as the betting odds agreed. Aldo,however, is as serious a test as it gets. If Conor destroys Aldo as easily as Siver, then, love him or hate him, he will have proven himself something special.I can’t wait for the fight so he can either be shut up or prove to be the start of perhaps a new Era.

  • Waldo Truth

    “earned” a shot at aldo! not until he beats Edgar, Mendes or Cub my friend.

    • Sir_Roy

      I agree. But from a business & money making standpoint, it’s a dumb risk to take.

      Neither of those match-ups will make anywhere near the income this title fight will generate and the risks of losing said title fight in potentate are too high.

      The UFC get to make more money off his Irish butt throwing him against Aldo now. Can toss him in the Octagon with all the above at a later date to give him a shot at “redemption” should he lose to Aldo. It’s a win / win giving him the shot now. Plus, it’s a fight the majority of fans really want to see now. Myself included.

    • shakejunt

      been a fan of cub for a long time, but his game plays right into conor’s. edgar, mendes, and lamas are the guys that’ll give him a real test.

      • Sir_Roy

        Mostly Edgar. I think his style absolutely sucks for Conor. (Which is probably why Conor has not been overly vocal in calling Edgar out … least not directly and not to my knowledge).

        While Mendes “might” present a problem, I think Conor can get back up to his feet more times than not and will prove a little too elusive on the feet.

  • runner2300

    Dana White: “Since costs are too high to have the fight on McGregor’s home turf, I’m going to make sure I have his girlfriend be the referee and his mother and father are two of the 3 judges” It’s the least I could do to help pave his way to a title so I can make a ton of money off this guy”

    • Sir_Roy

      You have to be alluding to Dana actually having done anything unethical with regards Conor’s career in issuing a statement like that … what do you think he’s done exactly?

      Conor’s built himself up man. His personality and his fighting style are both exciting and folks want to tune in. The UFC, Conor and the fans all benefit. Why complain?

      I think the match makers at the UFC have been feeding Conor fights that fit his style, and that they feel would be exciting to watch. They have been right on both counts. Two top 10 fighters though do not constitute feeding Conor “cans” all the same. I don’t think, under “normal” circumstances, that Conor deserves a title shot yet. But take into consideration the attention he brings to the sport, the manner in which he’s won, his polarizing personality and, well, yeah. A title shot makes huge financial and marketing sense right now.

    • deepgrim

      yes because so many of connors fights are going to the 3 judges

  • Don Lee

    It makes sense from a business stand point to have McGregor fight for the title. Why risk him losing to a wrestler and blow a huge money making opportunity. You know Aldo wants this fight bad because he will make a killing off PPV.

    • Digiaddict

      id doubt it, this ppv wont do more than 450k buys.

      • Don Lee

        It would be a much bigger PPV fight than any Aldo has had or will have.

        • Digiaddict

          well i cant say will ever have. but i see your point.

          • Don Lee

            The only other fight that might get him a bigger payday would be against Pettis.

          • Digiaddict

            the pettis fight would be an easier sell….way more highlights to show for promos, a fighter with a better resume AND a better skill set. a fighter who is or has been a champ. honestly, the difference in ppv buys btwn the two arent gonna be that big. at most 450-500 for aldo no matter who he fights.

            The problem is what happen to the ufc’s credibility when or if Conner loses, after we just heard this “once in a life time” “the mma’s muhamad ali” crap.

            when it comes to ppv and prize fight marketing. Dana white is on the bottom of the list, seriously. he’s been called to the carpet on his ppv rapism buy the guys who paved the way for ppv and are getting fighters no one heard of millions per fight……on ppv or not.

          • Digiaddict

            When Al haymon bring his stable of boxers to NBC in March, we will see a steep decline in ufc ppv’s and viewings. I know a lot of you have no clue who Al Haymon is but he just signed a multiyear deal with nbc to bring boxing back to network t.v

            how’s this for a free fight that will destroy any mma ppv AND most boxing ppv’s
            March 7 on network t.v Keith thurman vs gurerro, AND broner vs. john molina.

            then we got danny garcia fighting on free t.v vs Lamont peterson.

            anyone who wants to go against that…good luck to ya. the ufc NEEDS more stars but throwing u to the cobras will only get um bit

          • TheCerealKiller

            Being completely honest, never heard of them. Boxing is dead in the casual fans eyes.

          • Digiaddict

            Well, the numbers say boxing is waaay bigger than you might think, the fighters paydays say its waaaay bigger than you might think. Boxing has actual stars, mma, not really anyone. just a bunch of popular guys.

            As for Haymon, if your really a fight fan, learn on how he’s doing it. ill bet you dana knows him personally, so do the fertittas. ask rogan who he is and im sure he can tell you exactly, so can big john and herb. im sure AKA would love for him to send some fighters over to help train if he hasnt already.

            If you wanna talk fight numbers or ppv buys, read up on how a guy can take a fighter and NOT sign a promotional contract and have him make more than any other athlete. he’s not a promoter ALL he does is advise fighters and his roster is crazy.

            i havent even mentioned ROC NATION and there deal with the network to bring more boxing on t.v….dont see much new mma other than the recycled garb

            Its not a comp but unless dana stops his tom foolery, the ufc numbers will get worse. you dont hear how its the fastest growing sport anymore do you, nor do you see dana claiming its beating other sports numbers do you. read up on how the other promoters called out zuffa for an audit after he was caught lying about numbers. and goldenboy was gonna pay all costs. zuffa declined and stoped with the crazy numbers and now we have solid reporting on it

          • Digiaddict

            but hey, no need in me talking the fight game biz whn the only person some know in the biz is dana and takes what he says and does and “gold”, even though folks who make way more with less say he rapes his customers, and his t.v deals are laughable and have predicted his ppv decline. the ufc is great, its fights like this that reek of turd. let conner grow and become a huge star, or spend them marketing dollars on Pettis, he is already a champ you know

          • TheCerealKiller

            Wow, enhance your calm. If I turn on the TV right now, I can find MMA on somewhere. I can’t do the same with boxing. I don’t know the numbers, nor do I care to read about them, but nobody talks about boxing anywhere I go anymore. As for the pay, I know there are guys still making pennies to box. Only the top guys make good money.

          • Digiaddict

            well if you dont know the numbers how can you speak on it? thats what my point is. im a combat sport guy boxing mma its all good. but if i wanna discuss ppv or how fights should be promoted an gates and fighter pay. i need to know about the movers n shakers. the folks who put on the best shows and make the most doe for the fighters.

            but hey, i bet you and none of your friends heard of Deontey Wilder or Bermane Stiverne have you? nope?? well thy just fought saturday and as reportd by espn
            Wilder made 1million and Stiverne made 970,000……..now you tell me an mma guy who no one knows making a million per fight. its more like the top guys in mma “might” get a million per fight, if its on ppv. oh yea, that wilder stiverene fight wasnt on ppv. you might want to look into the sweet science. itll make you understand who is really a good mma fighter vs great. you cant understand punches if your green to boxing. anything you say regarding punches stance of footwork is a big guess.

          • TheCerealKiller

            Never heard of any of them. I used to love boxing 15-20 years ago. Not anymore.

          • riverdawg

            You are saying viewers will just stop watching the UFC because there is going to be Boxing on free network TV? Admittedly I don’t know anything about Al Haymon but isn’t this apples and oranges? Like many people, I prefer MMA to Boxing plain and simple. I’m not going to jump ship because Boxing’s best fighters are on Free TV.

          • Digiaddict

            No, thats not what im saying at all. one again, im NOT say mma fans will jump ship.

            What i am saying is, those casual fans that tune in from time to time, now have another option to watch a fight. a BRONER vs. MOLINA fight will destroy a ufc fight night. hands down. Broner is a bigger star than almost any mma fighter.

            Its not comparing the two but there is a lane they both share…it called combat sports. also they share the ppv sport lane as well, so its not exactly apples n oranges or hotdogs and hamburgers.

            oh yea and as for Al Haymon and his netwok and ppv power, heres just a small sample of his roster, get familiar with his name. im sure, rogan, dana, the fetitas, big john, and everyone else in the fight game knows him.
            mayweather, Broner,Garcia,chavez jr,Tarver,Alexander,Direll,Thurman,Mora………

  • WallyP

    “MMA FAN From El Paso” I personally think that McGregor is no doubt enriched with great talent but he is way over his head to challenge Jose Aldo! He should build up to 9-0 by beating up some of the other heavy hitters in the UFC then get after Aldo. Although there is a lot of money at stake here to promote this fight so is McGregor’s career in the UFC. Thats something he really needs to think about. In my opinion he is chasing the title too early and he will learn the hard way.

  • Digiaddict

    Man, Dana White jump the gun soo damn quick with these title fights its becoming a joke. they keep trying to build this dude up just to throw him in the lions den.

    If he’s truly the next big thing, why rush things? thats not how you should do it. but hey, a lot of ufc fans only care if the UFC is making money……strange. this is the reason the ufc ppv rates have went from sugar to shyt………i been tellin the posters on this site for years about this dumb stuff.

    If Conner loses to Aldo, then what does that say about all the hype and build up? after he loses and you look at his record, you start to discredit all the crap the ufc says.

    dude has more holes in his game than swiss cheese, no head movement, no footwork, crappy def. BUT he does have a solid jab and a nice str8 right hand. 2 punches that can win a lot of fights in mma due to the over use of the shitty overhand right.

    • Mike

      he is southpaw idiot he throws a straight left

      • Cdr

        yeah that straight left he has is deadly accurate.

  • JMH

    Do some big fights at Wembley then, big screens, 90k capacity, London is a prime location, might not be Ireland but it has a closing roof, then some of those costs shrink.

  • cheflacsto

    I am starting to become a believer in this guy, one thing I noticed was that he was vulnerable to a leg kick from Siver and that is Jose’s bread and butter. I think he has a better chance to beat Aldo than he does Frankie or Chad, but he needs to work on his defense. I will definitely be watching.

  • Chef

    Why buy PPV??? Go to a bar and watch it for free, or damn near free. Or, watch it free right after the fight for free on a website. This is a b.s. venue that Dana White is throwing together because the UFC’s lifeline is fading. He’s trying to make as much as possible before the ship sinks. Why do people pay for this crap? C’mon man!!!

  • Truth

    I’m sorry to all of Conor’s fans but Aldo is a different caliber of fighter, and when Aldo takes this fight to the ground which will be early, the fight is over. Conor is a exceptional one demensional fighter, that obviously being standup. You can’t be a one demionsonal champion. Aldo is a great all around fight. That’s all you need to know. Aldo by submission in the First round.

    • Ja Wangnan

      Ehh I understand your point here, but there should be some fine line between comparing both their arsenals now, and what their arsenals are later. We shouldn’t just use what we know of Conor now to assume his weaknesses later. Say leg-checking for example, that may seem to be an issue for Conor now (he tripped by Siver’s kick, imagine Aldo’s…), but I’m certain 4 months from now he’d improve on that field for the sake of going against Aldo.

      But let’s assume we’ll be talking about their skillset now. You’re right, Aldo can take the fight to the ground early, but one can argue Conor’s awkwardly quick speed and his range-spacing won’t allow that, and Aldo’s attempt to TD could lead to a surprisingly quick knockout.

      All in all, I feel this’ll be at least 2 Rounds (but I can’t picture them going the distance) by t/ko or sub. I honestly can’t tell who’d win through an unbiased standpoint, but I’m personally hoping for Conor. While others may find him annoying or whatever I find him incredibly charismatic and his fighting style is real refreshing, and has that “unique” feel I haven’t felt since Silva. Maybe my prowrestling mindset is what’s gravitating me towards him (charisma, “it” factor, mic skill, etc)