Dana White issues blow to Conor McGregor plans for Khabib rematch hours after Cowboy win

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Dana White Conor McGregor Khabib

UFC president Dana White speaks at the UFC 246 post-fight press conference (Image: GETTY)

UFC president Dana White has dismissed the prospect of Conor McGregor rematching Khabib Nurmagomedov in Russia. McGregor made his long-awaited return to the Octagon early on Sunday morning in the main event of UFC 246 in Las Vegas, where he locked horns with Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone in a welterweight match-up.

Nope, it ain’t happening in Moscow

Dana White on the prospect of Nurmagomedov vs McGregor II taking place in Moscow

The former two-division champion made a triumphant return to the cage, spectacularly stopping the future Hall-of-Famer in 40 seconds.

McGregor picked up his 22nd professional victory courtesy of a beautifully-placed head kick and a ferocious barrage of strikes which forced referee Herb Dean to call a halt to proceedings.

A matter of hours after McGregor got back in the win column, White revealed his eagerness to book the Irishman in a rematch against Nurmagomedov.

McGregor has been hellbent on avenging the submission defeat he suffered to the Russian in October 2018 and is keen to do soon on enemy territory – setting his sights on a Moscow showdown.

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Conor McGregor Cowboy Kick

Conor McGregor stopped Donald Cerrone in 40 seconds at UFC 246 (Image: GETTY)

White, however, isn’t keen on the idea of Nurmagomedov vs McGregor II taking place in Russia due to the volatile nature of the pair’s well-documented rivalry.

“Nope, it ain’t happening in Moscow. Why? Why do you think?” White told the UFC 246 post-event press conference. “Many, many reasons.

“We either do it in the UK, New York City, Dallas Texas Stadium, the stadium here [Allegiant Stadium], the T-Mobile. Those are the places that make sense.

“Realistically, Vegas is always the place that makes most sense for massive fights. Unfortunately, Khabib is not a big Vegas fan after what happened to him last time. So I dunno.”

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White’s comments didn’t sit well with McGregor, who asked: “Why was he against it? How much money is enough money, for f**** sake? “There’s a lot of money in Russia, a lot of revenue in Russia. I love Russia. I love the Russian people.

“I went to Moscow recently and they’re such a great nation, they’re so passionate about MMA, so passionate about me, and support me greatly. What a place.

“It would be like something out of Rocky movie. I’m very eager to do that. Dana the hometown Vegas boy. I know Vegas people will be campaigning for it. Let’s see.

“I would love that. I create spectacles for the people, that would be one hell of a spectacle. The place would shut down, the world would take notice. Your man [Khabib] was saying I wasn’t allowed out there. They were running in the streets screaming my name. I’m more Russian than that man. I would love to go to Moscow to compete there.”

Conor McGregor Khabib

UFC president Dana White isn’t keen on the idea of Khabib vs McGregor 2 in Russia (Image: GETTY)

UFC 246: McGregor vs Cerrone results

Conor McGregor vs Donald Cerrone – McGregor def. Cerrone via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 0:40

Holly Holm vs Raquel Pennington – Holm def. Pennington via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

Maurice Greene vs Aleksei Oleinik – Oleinik def. Greene via submission (armbar) – Round 2, 4:32

Diego Ferreira vs Anthony Pettis – Ferreira def. Pettis via submission (neck crank) – Round 2, 1:46

Brian Kelleher vs Ode Osbourne – Kelleher def. Osbourne via submission (guillotine choke) – Round 1, 2:49

Prelims

Maycee Barber vs Roxanne Modafferi – Modafferi def. Barber via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)

Andre Fili vs Sodiq Yusuff – Yusuff def. Fili via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Drew Dober vs Nasrat Haqparast – Dober def. Haqparast via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 1:10

JJ Aldrich vs Sabina Mazo – Mazo def. Aldrich via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Askar Askarov vs Tim Elliott – Askarov def. Elliot via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

Aleksa Camur vs Justin Ledet – Camur def. Ledet via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

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