Conor McGregor’s coach has said the fighter’s UFC title challenge is now likely to be later in the summer than the May date initially reported.
John Kavanagh of Straight Blast Gym was speaking to Ivan Yates on Newstalk Breakfast this morning.
“It’s not 100% yet,” he said. “There was talk of a May date, but it may now actually be later in the year.
“I’m getting a lot of tweets and messages, people wanting to book their flights. I would just say hold on until the UFC officially announce, but it does look like it will be later in the year. Mid-summer.”
The fighting coach did confirm the fight would definitely take place in Las Vegas, as UFC boss, Dana White
“It will be in Vegas - fighting capital of the world,” he said. Yates questioned why not Ireland, as McGregor had previously spoken of his wish to fight in front of a home crowd in Dublin.
“I would certainly love it to be Ireland,” Kavanagh agreed. “But unfortunately there are a few problems.”
“It would have to be in stadium, in Croke Park, and the problem with that is you have a curfew. 11pm it has to all shut down.”
The UFC would prefer it to be staged very late at night Irish time for a peak TV audience in the US, and Kavanagh said the costs of preparing GAA headquarters for a broadcast of that size were also a factor.
“It’s just a financial thing unfortunately,” he said.
However he also said a Dublin fight wasn’t permanently out of the question.
“We’re hoping that we’ll go over there, and win the belt,” he explained. “And then twist their arm a little bit and get the first defence in Dublin.”
The coach was also asked what McGregor was like in private and he said that the fighter’s intense public persona was an accurate reflection of his personality.
“To be honest, what you see is what you get,” Kavanagh said.
“We’ll go out for dinner sometimes and he’ll talk about cauliflower on his plate with the level of intensity as when he’s talking about a fight,” he laughed. “He is a very passionate individual.
“Whatever he’s doing, he likes to do it at a very high level. I wouldn't use chilled out to describe Conor.”