UFC boss Dana White and Conor McGregor's agent are at odds over a prospective Manny Pacquiao mega-match

UFC boss Dana White and Conor McGregor's agent are at odds over a prospective Manny Pacquiao mega-match
Manny Pacquiao and Conor McGregor.Photos by John Locher / Isaac Brekken / AP Images
  • The UFC President Dana White and Conor McGregor's agent Audie Attar appear to be at odds over the fights the Irishman could participate in this year.
  • McGregor competes for the first time in 12 months on January 23 when he takes on Dustin Poirier in Abu Dhabi.
  • If McGregor beats Poirier, White would like to see him thrust into a title shot against the current champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, or another contender should the Russian vacate the belt.
  • Attar, though, believes a boxing rules mega match involving Manny Pacquiao is next for his client.

FIGHT ISLAND - UFC boss Dana White and Audie Attar, who is Conor McGregor's agent, appear to be at odds over a prospective mega-match between the Irishman and Manny Pacquiao.

McGregor returns to the UFC Octagon for a lightweight fight against Dustin Poirier in the Fight Island finale at the Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi on January 23.

Should McGregor triumph, it would be his most significant win for almost five years and his biggest victory since he stopped Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205. That night he won the lightweight title and became a rare, two-weight champion in the UFC.


Victory would all but guarantee a shot at the 155-pound championship once again, and White would relish seeing the Irish striker engage Khabib Nurmagomedov in a rematch.

"That division is stacked with studs," White told the ESPN MMA reporter Brett Okamoto on Monday.

"I'm meeting with Khabib in Abu Dhabi to see what's next for him. Is he really retired, or is he going to go for 30-0?


"And you have all these other guys lined up. In a perfect world, Conor [would] fight two to three times this year and one of them is a title fight - that would be awesome."

McGregor's agent Attar foresees a fight away from the UFC

UFC boss Dana White and Conor McGregor's agent are at odds over a prospective Manny Pacquiao mega-match
McGregor and Audie Attar.Photo by David Becker/Getty Images for Wynn Nightlife

Attar - who runs powerful California-based talent representation firm Paradigm SM - has two marquee names on his roster: McGregor and Pacquiao.

Talk of the pair fighting in a boxing rules contest is nothing new, as McGregor said 12 months ago that he had held positive talks with the Filipino fighter.


That talk is now getting louder.

"I definitely believe it's inevitable [that they fight] for 2021," Attar told Dubai Eye 103.8 Sport, according to Boxing Scene.

"Both fighters want it, that's the key. If one side wants it and the other doesn't, it's not going to happen. But when both fighters want that fight to happen, why wouldn't it happen?


"If the fans want to see it, that almost guarantees that it's going to happen, right? As there's enough interest to develop something there."

Boxing Scene reported that Attar already spoke to the UFC about the boxing match, and that the suggested schedule always had the Poirier rematch taking place first, before a Pacquiao super-fight months later.

"We've been having amazing conversation with stakeholders across the world, including the Middle East. We'll see where it goes. I'd be shocked if it didn't happen in 2021," Attar said.


White, though, has other plans

UFC boss Dana White and Conor McGregor's agent are at odds over a prospective Manny Pacquiao mega-match
Dana White.Photo by UFC / YouTube

The UFC president believes a boxing match with Pacquiao will always be an option regardless of whether that takes place this year, next, or the year after.

However, at 32-years-old, time is of the essence for McGregor to maximize his spell as a top tier competitor in the UFC - and White wants to see what the Irishman can add to his already impressive legacy.

"The way that this kid is right now, mentally, physically, and emotionally, this kid is on it and ready to fight," White told ESPN.


"I'd love to see him focused on what he can do here at the UFC, whether it's taking another shot at the title against Khabib or, you know, fight for the title against somebody else if Khabib retires. And defend that title.

"A boxing match against any of these guys, that kind of stuff is always going to be there," he said.

"You are the absolute best right now in MMA and the timing is right now … [you're] not getting any younger, [and] I'd love to see him go for it here in the next year.


"If he wants to fight one of these boxing guys, do it next year. That fight's always going to be there."

White said the landmark, crossover bout between McGregor and Floyd Mayweather was "a one and done" situation for him.

"There's a lot of fights out there that can be made, I get it - they can make money. It's not really what I do. Poirier vs. McGregor - that's what I do."


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