Conor McGregor? Tony Ferguson still has big plans

Tony Ferguson isn't about to go gentle into that good night.

By: Zane Simon | 1 month ago
Conor McGregor? Tony Ferguson still has big plans
Tony Ferguson weighs in for UFC 279. - Amy Kaplan IMAGO/Icon Sportswire

No surprise that former interim UFC lightweight champion Tony Ferguson has no plans to retire. ‘El Cucuy’ is fresh off of his sixth straight loss, and third straight stoppage defeat inside the Octagon—handed out to him by Bobby Green back at UFC 291 in July.

After the fight, Ferguson told fans that he would have a conversation with Dana White and the rest of the UFC brass about what comes next. Whether that conversation has occurred yet or not, it seems fans already know one thing, they’ll see Ferguson back inside the cage again sometime soon.

Tony Ferguson defiant over retirement talk

In a recent message to his twitter account, the 39-year-old 10th Planet black belt gave fans a piece of his mind. With many suggesting the former Ultimate Fighter winner no longer has what it takes to compete, Ferguson outlined the reasons he feels like he’s been on a losing skid. None of them include being too old or too worn out to win at the highest level.

It seems Tony Ferguson blames a combination of bad sparring and training practices in recent years, a lack of joy for training and fighting, and a schedule too busy with other obligations for the reasons he’s failed to get his hand raised in what’s going on nearly half a decade now.

To be fair to Ferguson, in that time, he’s fought an absolute murderer’s row of oppositions. Title contenders Justin Gaethje, Michael Chandler, and Nate Diaz, former champion Charles Oliveira, and perennial action talents Beneil Dariush and Bobby Green. Still, Ferguson seems to have his aim set high for the future.

Tony Ferguson vs. Conor McGregor?

One of the men who took note of Ferguson’s recent list of excuses was former UFC double-champion Conor McGregor. The ‘Notorious’ Irishman has seemingly been struggling to find his own sense of self in the cage lately, with just one win in the past six-years and change. He’s supposedly set to fight Michael Chandler sometime in the coming months—the cherry on top of the miserable sundae that was TUF 31—but has been searching out any other opponent he can to avoid facing the former Bellator champion.

“I’m gonna end you badly. I’ve not forgot,” McGregor wrote in quote tweet of Ferguson’s list.

Ferguson was quick to respond, calling for the “Coward-Champ” to “sign on the dotted line.”

Things have gotten bad enough with McGregor’s recent posturing that Dana White has taken to reassuring fans that the SBG talent is still definitely going to be fighting Chandler, and not anybody else, for his next bout in the Octagon. But even White has had to admit that that’s not likely going to happen any time in 2023.

“Obviously, we’re running this whole season of The Ultimate Fighter,” White said in a recent interview. “To not do that fight would be ridiculous, but we’re working on it.”

“I’m hoping we can do it early next year,” he added.

In the meantime, it seems likely that McGregor will continue to pick fights with anyone and everyone that can keep his name in the headlines from one week to the next, and that Ferguson will continue his crusade against the realities of aging for whatever fight promotion is still willing to put him back in the cage.

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About the author
Zane Simon
Zane Simon

Zane Simon is a senior editor, writer, and podcaster for Bloody Elbow. He has worked with the website since 2013, taking on a wide variety of roles. A lifelong combat sports fan, Zane has trained off & on in both boxing and Muay Thai. He currently hosts the long-running MMA Vivisection podcast, which he took over from Nate Wilcox & Dallas Winston in 2015, as well as the 6th Round podcast, started in 2014. Zane is also responsible for developing and maintaining the ‘List of current UFC fighters’ on Bloody Elbow, a resource he originally developed for Wikipedia in 2010.

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