Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Dana White Shares Fate Of Lightweight Title If Khabib Stays Retired

Dana White has provided some much-needed clarity about the future of the UFC lightweight championship.

Ever since Khabib Nurmagomedov retired following his UFC 254 victory over Justin Gaethje, fans and fighters alike have speculated about what would happen with the lightweight title. The closest thing that resembled any answers was that it all depended on how Dana White’s upcoming meeting with Khabib goes.

One prevalent theory was that if Khabib cemented his retirement despite White’s best efforts, that could open the door for Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier to be for the undisputed title. Speaking with ESPN recently, White would contradict this theory and specify what will happen with the lightweight title if Khabib’s retirement sticks.

“If Khabib does retire, then whoever the highest-ranked guy is at the time will end up facing Conor if Conor beats Poirier and would end up fighting for the title, I’m sure,” White said.

White Clings To Hope For One More Khabib Fight

Making the Grade: UFC 254: Khabib vs. Gaethje - MMA Fighting
Khabib lands body kick to Justin Gaethje in what may be his final fight. Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

It is again very interesting and noteworthy to point out that Dana White only addressed what would happen if Conor McGregor won and failed to address what a Dustin Poirier victory at UFC 257 would mean for the lightweight title picture. But by now, the informed public is aware that if White had it his way, the next lightweight title fight would feature Khabib Nurmagomedov conducting his fourth title defense instead of a vacant title being filled.

“As a promoter, you always want the best guys in the world. But when a guy wants to retire, he probably should,” White said. “But the difference with a guy like Khabib is that he’s been through so much and losing his dad is such a major blow to him. It was something that they did together and his dad wanted him to hit 30-0. But as a fight fan, I want Khabib to fight 10 more.”

What’s your prediction for what the next UFC lightweight title fight will be?