Charles Oliveira: ‘If I Had The Chance To Fight Conor McGregor For Money Today, I Would’

Charles Oliveira
Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie - USA TODAY Sports & Jeff Bottari - Zuffa LLC

UFC lightweight kingpin, Charles Oliveira has admitted that if offered the opportunity to attempt his next title defense against former two-weight gold holder, Conor McGregor for a significant payday, he would find the proposal too difficult to turn down.

Sao Paulo native, Oliveira headlined UFC 269 last weekend, stopping former interim lightweight titleholder, Dustin Poirier with an eventual third round standing rear-naked choke win. 

The victory came as Oliveira’s tenth consecutively – the current division best winning streak, as well as marking the first successful lightweight title defense of his reign. 

Prior to the final flagship event of this annum, UFC president, Dana White handed another former interim gold holder; Justin Gaethje the seal of approval regarding his next title challenge against either Oliveira or previous opponent, Poirier, however, the aforenoted, McGregor has thrown his name into the hat to challenge Oliveira next.

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Following the Chute Boxe trainee’s submission win over two-time opponent, Poirier last Saturday, as well as mocking the Lafayette native’s performance, McGregor questioned when he would be fighting Oliveira for the lightweight title.

Welcoming a potential lightweight title defense against the Dubliner, Oliveira offered to remain in Las Vegas beyond this weekend in order to tackle McGregor in an impromptu UFC Vegas 45 headliner.

Charles Oliveira maintains only a “fool” would turn down a fight with former champion, Conor McGregor

Despite the aforenoted, Gaethje receiving a stamp of approval from White, Oliveira has claimed that only a fool would turn down a fight with McGregor, especially given the lucrative payday that comes with sharing the Octagon with the former two-weight titleholder.

If I had the chance (in the past) to fight for the belt or fight Conor (McGregor), everybody knows I’d fight for the belt,” Charles Oliveira told MMA Fighting reporter Guilherme Cruz on the Trocacao Franca podcast. “That already happened, I’m the champion now. The champion has a name and his name is Charles Oliveira – Charles ‘Do Bronx’. If I had the chance to fight Conor for money today, I would. The belt is mine and continues being mine. We’ll continue building our legacy and making history.

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Of course, no one’s a fool,” Charles Oliveira explained. “‘No, I’ll fight someone else because of the belt, leave Conor alone’ – who’s going to do that? Only a fool. If I had the opportunity to fight Conor, I would definitely fight Conor. The belt is mine regardless. The division has to get by and wait a little bit. There’s nothing else to do. We have to think about our families, our children, think about what we can do down the line.

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Whilst admitting that he would be foolish to turn down a lucrative paycheck that comes with a fight against McGregor, he also confirmed that if the promotion offered him a bout agreement to fight Gaethje next, he would accept it regardless.

That happened to me. I was the #7 in the rankings and wanted to fight (top contenders) and they (the UFC) didn’t want to,” Charles Oliveira said. “The champion has a name now, we’re part of the same organization, and I’ll fight whoever the UFC puts against me. If they say it’s Conor, I’ll fight him. If they say it’s Justin (Gaethje), I’ll fight him. I just want to go home now and get some rest with my daughter and go back to the cage as soon as possible.