Rumors are swirling on Monday night about Conor McGregor’s next fight after a report from BJ Penn suggested UFC 257: Poirier vs. McGregor 2 on January 23 could be for the vacant UFC lightweight championship. McGregor ignited those flames even further by suddenly issuing a bold promise about his upcoming fight.
In short, UFC 257: Poirier vs. McGregor 2 could be for UFC gold, and McGregor promised to deliver the goods.
We're less than three weeks away from #UFC257 🎨
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) January 5, 2021
UFC Gold On The Line at UFC 257?
Per BJ Penn, the UFC might have accidentally let the cat out of the bag early by updating the programming behind the Twitter chatbot for their official UFC account.
You can see some of the posts from social media below that show the UFC’s chatbot telling fans UFC 257: Poirier vs. McGregor 2 will be for a “lightweight title belt”.
Gold? 🧐 pic.twitter.com/lNClYABNVj
— Kelsey McCarson (@kelsey_mccarson) January 5, 2021
A chatbot is a program that answers questions automatically with pre-selected responses and information.
The chatbot for the official UFC Twitter account is programmed right now to tell people asking about the fight through direct messages that the main event of UFC 257 will be for the lightweight title. If you want to read the direct message thread, you can see Blaine Henry’s tweet.
That probably means the decision has already been made and the UFC was about to make an announcement. But now the programming seems to have done that for them.
McGregor’s Bold Promise
Meanwhile, McGregor made a bold promise about his upcoming rematch against Poirier just a few minutes after the story about the lightweight title bout started making the rounds on social media.
The fighter finished Poirier in the first fight back in 2014 in a featherweight contest in less than two minutes.
Fast forward last year when McGregor stopped Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone at UFC 246 in January even faster than that.
Well, McGregor is promising something just as special as both those dominant wins, and he might be particularly motivated now since he could be fighting Poirier to recapture UFC gold.
McGregor posted, “I promise a masterpiece.”
I promise a masterpiece.
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) January 5, 2021
McGregor is one of only seven fighters in UFC history to capture championships in more than one division and one of only four to hold both titles at the same time.
Now, McGregor could be fighting for the UFC lightweight title against Poirier at UFC 257, and he promises to deliver a “masterpiece”.
Another potential option might be for McGregor and Poirier to fight for an interim championship.
While that might make some sense, it also might simply be better for the company to respect the retirement wishes of current UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Nurmagomedov scored a second-round submission over Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 in October and announced his retirement during the post-fight interview.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) October 24, 2020
UFC president Dana White is still holding out hope for Nurmagomodov’s return next year, so offering an interim belt to the winner of Poirier vs. McGregor 2 might turn out to be the best option in White’s mind.
Regardless, McGregor’s return is less than three weeks away, and it looks like he could be fighting to grab gold again.
Whether it’s for the vacant title or interim gold remains to be seen, but things appear to be heading in that direction.
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