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UFC superstar Conor McGregor sets return bout in Las Vegas

Updated April 14, 2024 - 12:21 am

UFC president Dana White nearly got through the full week of UFC 300 without making a much-anticipated announcement about the return of superstar Conor McGregor.

He decided to casually drop it into a post-fight news conference in a tent outside T-Mobile Arena shortly before midnight after receiving a handwritten note from Hunter Campbell, the organization’s chief business officer.

“June 29,” White said, pausing to build the anticipation. “Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler.”

The bout will take place at UFC 303 at T-Mobile Arena and marks McGregor’s return to competition for the first time in nearly three years since he suffered a broken leg against Dustin Poirier in the same venue.

The bout will be contested at 170 pounds.

McGregor has held UFC titles at featherweight and lightweight, but previously teased a jump to 185 pounds for his return.

White had said as recently as Friday night that there was nothing to announce about McGregor’s rumored return to the cage, dismissing the rumors as pure internet speculation.

A final deal was struck Saturday, but White said negotiations were not contentious.

“It’s never hard with Conor,” White said. “He’s been a great partner. He’s easy to deal with. He’s a smart dude. Conor is a die-hard UFC guy and will be until he retires and beyond.”

McGregor has lost three of his last four fights while venturing into the worlds of acting and professional boxing. The 35-year-old has also had numerous legal issues.

McGregor and Chandler filmed a season of “The Ultimate Fighter” as opposing coaches last year, but the traditional season-ending bout has been on hold.

Chandler, who hasn’t competed since November 2022, has lost three of four fights since falling short in a title bout against Charles Oliveira.

He perhaps offered a tease of the deal being done during the UFC 300 broadcast. When the cameras panned to him, he flashed the numbers “3-0-3” in order with his fingers while mouthing the numbers.

Contact Adam Hill at ahill@reviewjournal.com. Follow @AdamHillLVRJ on X.

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