Photo by Damon Martin

Dana White: Conor McGregor Will Be Stripped, Ferguson vs. Nurmagomedov for Undisputed Title

Dana White has finally confirmed the stakes for the UFC 223 main event and that Conor McGregor will be stripped of his title

UFC president Dana White is finally providing some clarity for the UFC 223 main event in April.

Tony Ferguson will battle Khabib Nurmagomedov for the undisputed lightweight championship with plans to strip Conor McGregor of his title before that event takes place.

White was elusive when trying to explain this same scenario at the UFC 223 pre-fight press conference but now he absolutely confirms that Ferguson and Nurmagomedov are not battling for an interim belt in April.

“I said in the last press conference, that fight will be for the title. It’s not for the interim title. That fight is for the title,” White told TMZ.

Now for the undisputed title to be on the line at UFC 223 that means McGregor would have to be stripped of his belt that he first won back in 2016. McGregor hasn’t fought in the UFC since that time, spending 2017 focused on the birth of his first child and then his boxing match against Floyd Mayweather.

Now it seems White is finally ready to move on without McGregor — or at least until he’s ready to return to the Octagon later this year.

“Right,” White confirmed when asked if he’s stripping McGregor’s title. “Is he upset? Conor understands. Conor made a lot of money. He wants some time off, but the division has to go on and the business has to go on.”

In a perfect world, White would love to see McGregor challenge either Ferguson or Nurmagomedov later this year, but once again there are no guarantees.

“I’d like to see Conor fight the winner,” White stated. “It was August and then September [for his return]. I say it all the time, with that kind of money, Conor might never come back. It’s a lot of money.”

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Damon Martin is a veteran mixed martial arts journalist who has been covering the industry since 2003 with bylines on FOX Sports, CNN, Bleacher Report and numerous other outlets.