McGregor has been advised to take a warm-up fight in his UFC return later this year, but the Irishman has been warned there are no easy opponents for him
Conor McGregor has been warned there are no worthy opponents for a warm-up fight upon his UFC return.
McGregor is looking to book his first fight since a horror leg break against Dustin Poirier last July. The Irishman recently sparred for the first time since his injury and has called for a title shot against welterweight champion Kamaru Usman later this year.
The former two-weight champion has lost three of his last four fights and has been advised to have a warm-up fight before challenging the elite at welterweight or lightweight. But MMA analyst Chael Sonnen thinks there are no easy opponents for McGregor to fight in his return.
“[The opponent in a tune-up fight] is a lamb coming to slaughter and he absolutely understands it and everybody knows it,” Sonnen said. “Within the UFC that human being doesn’t exist. Can we get Conor somebody out of the top ten? No, that’s silly.
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“He’s going to be a main event, he’s going to be on pay-per-view, we’re going to have somebody within the top 10. Who is it at 155-pounds that you believe would be the tune-up fight?” Once you realize that person doesn’t exist there is no guarantee that he’s gonna go out there and get good work.
“You’re not bringing in an outside guy that’s never been in here before, that’s what they doing in boxing. In the UFC you’re not coming to learn how to fight, you have well proven that you know how to fight.”
Many considered McGregor’s 2020 fight against Donald Cerrone as a warm-up for the Irishman, as he returned after a year away from the cage to knock out ‘Cowboy’ in just 40-seconds.
Sonnen thinks McGregor is on borrowed time as every fight in the UFC could be his last. It’s unlikely that McGregor will get his requested opponent in Usman, as he is pencilled in to defend his belt against top contender Leon Edwards next.
“Should we bump him up to 170-pounds and play the same game? What person is it that feel fits that criteria? When you’re dealing with Conor you have to assume every single fight is his last one,” Sonnen continued.
“He is at that point in his career, I don’t know what that number is. I do believe if we asked Conor himself he’d give us a number, he would be guessing like anybody would but I think you’d be surprised.”