Conor McGregor hopes for ‘100 more fights’ ahead of UFC return vs. Michael Chandler

MMA News
Conor McGregor hopes for ‘100 more fights’ ahead of UFC return vs. Michael Chandler

Consistency is the key word for Conor McGregor in 2023 and the remainder of his fight career as he gears up for a return to the UFC.

McGregor (22-6 MMA, 10-4 UFC), a former two-division UFC champion, hasn’t fought since suffering a broken leg in a first-round TKO loss to Dustin Poirier in their trilogy bout in July 2021. His highly anticipated comeback is looming, though, because McGregor is nearly finished filming Season 31 of “The Ultimate Fighter” opposite Michael Chandler ahead of an expected matchup later this year.

Inactivity has been a notable part of McGregor’s story since he captured a second UFC title more than six years ago. He’s fought just four times since November 2016, not including a high-profile boxing match with Floyd Mayweather that provided plenty of financial incentive to take time off.

Now 34, McGregor likely only has a limited window left to compete at the elite level of the sport. He wants to make the most of that.

“What do I hope for in this world? I hope for 100 fights. I hope for 100 more fights,” McGregor told Barstool Sports’ “My Mom’s Basement” with Robbie Fox. “I’m working for consistency. I’ve been having this on, off, on, off nonsense for too long, via fight politics, via injuries, via just life. It does happen. It’s God’s plan. It’s all God, so I accept and understand it. But I’m excited and hopeful that I can get a nice consecutive run of bouts.

“I’ve got a lot of exciting fights. I’ve got some rivalries. You’ve got guys on the climb, you’ve got guys in other divisions that are supposed to be the best. There’s loads of bouts I could have and I’m excited for every single one of them.”

Before he can return to competition, McGregor must go through a six-month period of testing under the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) program after previously withdrawing from the testing pool. He was not asked and did not address when he intends to enter the program, which leaves questions about when his return will actually take place.

It appears McGregor’s focus is wholeheartedly on fighting Chandler (23-8 MMA, 2-3 UFC), though. He brushed off the reported conflict between them during “TUF 31” filming as merely the intensity of competition, and said he doesn’t have anything personal against Chandler.

What he does have, however, is a plan inside the octagon. McGregor thinks he’s going to be far too much for the former three-time Bellator champion and UFC title challenger Chandler can handle.

“I’m just too slick for him,” McGregor said. “Too skilled for him. He’s not fought someone like me. I’ve fought someone like him, though. Just in general. It’s the mixed martial arts style. The short wrestler. It ain’t nothing peculiar or unsure of. I’ve fought against that style for many, many years. Michael, obviously, he was with a smaller promotion and then he worked his way up. He’s had some excellent fights, and he’s earned his right to be in this position. But it’ll be my job on fight night to show the levels and show there’s a much higher difference in skill level here. It’s a nice bout for me.”

Conor McGregor hopes for ‘100 more fights’ ahead of UFC return vs. Michael Chandler