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White: Conor McGregor vs Dustin Poirier not for UFC title — ‘Khabib’s going to fight’

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UFC 229: Khabib v McGregor Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is finalizing a lightweight showdown between former 155-pound champion Conor McGregor and top division contender Dustin Poirier, a pay-per-view (PPV) headliner that is likely to land somewhere in early 2021.

But don’t expect “Notorious” or “The Diamond” to walk away from their rematch as undisputed lightweight champion, because current 155-pound titleholder Khabib Nurmagomedov will be returning to the Octagon after the holidays.

That’s according to UFC President Dana White.

“No, Khabib’s going to fight,” White told MMA Junkie. “I believe he’s going to. (McGregor-Poirier is) not for the title. I told you guys that I think he’s going to go to 30 (wins) If he’s still testing – why the hell would you want to test still if you’re not going to fight? He hasn’t committed, but I feel like he’s going to, and I’m not really pushing him. We talked about it and he just fought. Let him take some time, spend some time with his family, spend the holidays. There’s no rush.”

The rest of the division may not feel the same way.

Nurmagomedov (29-0) retired from mixed martial arts (MMA) after defending his title against Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 back in October, but the promotion has been in no hurry to vacate his title and “The Eagle” has yet to withdraw from the USADA testing pool.

In addition, White and Co. are still waiting for McGregor to put pen to paper for the Poirier fight so as of this writing, the future of the lightweight division is still unclear. But I guess if there is “no rush” then all we can do is wait.