Back in July at UFC 264, McGregor suffered a gruesome ankle break in his loss to Dustin Poirier in the final seconds of the first round, which caused the end of the fight. Afterward, McGregor underwent emergency surgery whilst promising fans that he will be back to compete. UFC lightweight champion Oliveira hopes that to be the case.
“I hope he comes back 100 percent again and continues to put on a show and making things happen, because he sells a lot,” Oliveira told MMA Fighting. “He’s a guy that does a lot for the sport.”
No stranger to adversity himself throughout his career, Oliveira believes that it will be a massive mental block for McGregor to overcome but something which he must surpass if he’s ever to return and have success. The Brazilian himself had his share of ups and downs before finally getting his hands on the UFC title, a journey that took him 10 years. Every loss for him was a chance to rebuild and bounce back, and that is the mindset McGregor must have to make a comeback.
“It’s a new Charles, a new story since my last loss,” said Oliveira. “It’s a new mind, a new spirit, a new person today,” Oliveira said. “That’s up to you and how your mind operates, how much your spirit wants it, how much your heart desires it. When people say you can’t do something, if you tell yourself you can, then you can do it.
“It’s up to his head, how much he still wants this. Some people had serious injuries and bounced back. Let’s see how much Conor wants to return, how much Conor wants to fight again.”
Oliveira is expected to face Dustin Poirier next for his first title defense according to the UFC president Dana White, a bout in which the Brazilian believes he is fully confident in winning despite oddsmakers having the Lafayette native as the favorite. No official announcement of the matchup has been made as of this writing.
As for McGregor, it is hard to say when he will return after having suffered such a horrific injury, but the Irishman seems more than keen to rebuild and return as soon as possible. It is likely that McGregor will be out for a year or so.
Do you believe Conor McGregor has the mindset to return to success?