It seems like it was a lifetime ago but it’s been less than a year since fight fans saw Conor McGregor as the reigning, defending, undisputed UFC featherweight champion. He won the title when he KO’d Jose Aldo at UFC 194 in December 2015.
His reign as featherweight champion was brief as the UFC stripped him of his title when he won the lightweight belt last November. Following that, Max Holloway defeated Aldo to claim the featherweight title.
The UFC champion is confident his status as champion will remain the same should McGregor ever decide to return to 145 pounds, which is not likely.
Holloway recently appeared on MMA Tonight on SiriusXM Rush, and during the interview, the champion went on record by saying that he doesn’t think McGregor will ever return to the division due to the fact that he knows that he would bring his “fairytale” crashing down.
“There’s this fairytale,” said Holloway (via MMA Fighting). “Everybody’s talking about him as the champion and this and that but his last four fights he’s 2-2, one of them being questionable. He could have been 1-3 right now if we’re being totally honest. At the end of the day, there’s this fairytale to him, and this fairytale breaks if he fights someone like me and I beat him.”
McGregor is indeed 2-2 in his last four bouts. He lost to Nate Diaz by submission at UFC 196 but got his revenge by picking up a decision win over Diaz at UFC 202 in August of 2016. He would go onto to finish Eddie Alvarez to win the UFC lightweight title at UFC 205 in November but then lost to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in a boxing match in August.
“Fairytales end. This fairytale of him being the baddest man or whatever you think he is, it ends if he fights me and things don’t go his way. You hear it with the Nate excuses: ‘Nate is three times the size of me!’ I’m pretty sure they’re almost close in height. You’re over here calling yourself a gorilla and this and that, and now you’re fighting a guy that’s three [times the] size of you, it makes no sense to me. He looks three [times the] size of Floyd and Floyd wasn’t crying.”
“He runs his mouth, he talks the talk, and he’s been walking the walk, so touché to him. At the end of the day, when I talk I’m not saying stuff to try and hurt your feelings. When I speak, I speak facts, and if you’re getting mad, it’s because you know it’s the truth. That guy tries to push it off a little bit more in a WWE way, and that’s him, that’s fair play to him. He can do it, I can’t do that. I’m pretty sure that if a lot of people could do it, we’d be doing it. You can’t, and you’ve got to respect someone like that.
“He does it his way, I’m doing it my way. When I start running my mouth I start running facts, I start giving guys numbers, I start giving guys ideas of where I come from and where I work. He just kind of wants to get under your skin but you can’t be mad at the guy, that’s his personality. I’m not a hater. I respect him. He’s on his grind, and he’s using it, and he’s getting his, so fair play to him.”
Holloway concludes that McGregor might be able to out-promote him but knows for sure that he would fight him.
“At the end of the day, they want their fairytale to end, they know who to call but they don’t want to. They want to run off into the sunset, and that’s them.”