#UFC 231 #Max Holloway #Brian Ortega #Valentina Shevchenko #Joanna Jedrzejczyk #Gunnar Nelson #Alex Oliveira #Thiago Santos #Jimi Manuwa #Conor McGregor #Khabib Nurmagomedov #UFC 229

Dana White: Conor McGregor vs. Georges St-Pierre was 'not even close' to being booked by UFC

There were several options on the table for Georges St-Pierre’s comeback fight, according to UFC President Dana White. A matchup with lightweight champion Conor McGregor apparently was not one of them.

White today announced that the former longtime welterweight champion St-Pierre (25-2 MMA, 19-2 UFC) would make his return to the octagon after a more than three-year layoff to challenge UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping (30-7 MMA, 20-7 UFC) later this year.

St-Pierre’s comeback was made official last month when the UFC announced it had inked the Canadian superstar to a new contract, marking the end of a hiatus from competition that began when he vacated the 170-pound belt following a title defense against Johny Hendricks at UFC 167 in November 2013.

Speculation about who St-Pierre would fight ran rampant, with ideas from the lightweight division up to middleweight being on the table. A St-Pierre vs. McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) matchup was one speculated showdown, but the UFC boss said that was never realistically discussed.

“(We were) not even close (to making a fight between McGregor and St-Pierre),” White said. “Georges said he could make 155 pounds. But let’s be honest here – everyone wants to take a shot at Michael Bisping. They think he’s beatable, and obviously Georges St-Pierre is no different. So he’s going to step up and try to take his 185-pound title.”

While St-Pierre’s UFC future is now known, McGregor’s is not. The reigning 155-pound titleholder is coming off a second-round knockout of Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205 in November and is currently in the midst of a hiatus of his own as he waits for his first child to be born later this year.

In the meantime, McGregor is pursuing a boxing fight with Floyd Mayweather, which “The Notorious” insists he wants to happen before he returns to the octagon. White, however, recently said McGregor’s next fight would come against the winner of Saturday’s UFC 209 interim lightweight title fight between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson.

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