A long rumored bout between Conor McGregor and Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone is set for UFC 246 on Jan. 18 in Las Vegas.
ESPN first reported the confirmation of the bout on Thursday, citing UFC president Dana White, who said, “Conor has signed and Cowboy is ready to go.”
McGregor had been teasing a return to the Octagon throughout 2019, although he at one point hinted again at retirement. The last few weeks have centered on a fight with Cerrone, which has now appears to have come to fruition.
The Irish superstar hasn’t fought since losing to Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 229 in October of 2018, marking another full year on the sidelines before he gets back in the cage at T-Mobile Arena in January.
Cerrone has fought five times since McGregor’s loss to Nurmagomedov. He won three consecutive bouts, including his return to the lightweight before Tony Ferguson stopped him from getting a shot at the UFC lightweight title.
Following the loss to Ferguson, Cerrone then got TKO’d by Justin Gaethje.
The bout, which will see both men return to welterweight, is expected to headline UFC 246.
It is another rare occasion where the star power of the fighters involved warrants a pay-per-view headlining bout, though the UFC recently did just that with Jorge Masvidal and Nate Diaz headlining UFC 244 in New York without a championship on the line. It is even more rare that two fighters coming off of losses headlines a pay-per-view.
Conor McGregor and Cowboy Cerrone have had words before, now they’re going to fight
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