Friday 28 October 2016

McGregor to go for light title

Notorious to take on Dos Anjos in March bout

Conor McGregor has another title in his sights (SPORTSFILE)
Conor McGregor has another title in his sights (SPORTSFILE)

UFC featherweight champion Conor McGregor could be a dual-weight title holder by St Patrick's Day as he is due to fight for the UFC lightweight title on March 5 against Rafael dos Anjos.

The UFC has not announced the title fight, and sources say bout agreements have not yet been signed, but the bout is due to take place at UFC 197 in Las Vegas, either at McGregor's happy hunting ground of the MGM Grand or Mandalay Bay.

The Crumlin mixed martial artist had the option of a rematch against Jose Aldo, a featherweight defence against Frankie Edgar or a meeting with Dos Anjos and the Dubliner has reportedly picked the latter.

It is seen in MMA circles as the 'money' option, despite the fact that Dos Anjos isn't that big a name in the UFC, because McGregor will be bidding to become only the third person to hold two UFC titles simultaneously.

McGregor (19-2) is coming off a 13-second knockout win over Jose Aldo for the 145-pound title at UFC 194 on December 12.

It set a promotional record for fastest finish in title-fight history.


Fighting out of SBG Ireland in Dublin, McGregor is 7-0 in the UFC and will look to become just the third fighter ever to win UFC titles in multiple weight classes. Randy Couture and BJ Penn are the others. Dos Anjos (25-7) also is coming off a first-round knockout in December.

He recorded his first defence in a 66-second TKO against Donald Cerrone on December 19 in Orlando, Florida.

In the co-main event, female bantamweight champion Holly Holm will seek her first title defense against Miesha Tate (17-5).

Holm, 34, will compete under the new terms of a contract extension she signed with the UFC last weekend.

A former boxing world champion, Holm upset Ronda Rousey for the 135-pound female title at UFC 193 in November. Holm won the bout via knockout in the second round with a left head kick.

She is expected to fight Rousey again at some point, but Rousey, 28, has not yet announced when she will return to the Octagon. She did indicate to ESPN late last year she was interested in the rematch.

A former titleholder in Strikeforce, Tate (17-5) will carry a four-fight winning streak into the five-round championship. Currently training out of Las Vegas, Tate was promised a title shot against Rousey last summer, but the UFC decided to book a fight between Holm and Rousey instead. Tate hasn't fought since a decision win against Jessica Eye in July.

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