Despite what others believe in, Ben Askren thinks it will make more sense for UFC to push the bout between Alex Pereira and Israel Adesanya instead of the anticipated McGregor-Chandler fight.
Conor McGregor’s return is expected to return soon at UFC, with previous reports claiming it could be next year. In his recent response to a fan on Twitter, the Irish fighter even suggested that he was “in” for the UFC 300, which will reportedly be in April 2024. In line with that, different reports about the name of the next opponent of “The Notorious” surfaced.
Last month, Daniel Cormier stressed that Michael Chandler would be the perfect fit for the role. This complements earlier rumors about the possible matchup between the two since the two fighters took the role of coaches on The Ultimate Fighter Season 31. The presence of the two sparked the belief that the two would fight at the end of the show. While that didn’t happen, many believe that the two would clash in the cage in the future.
Askren, nonetheless, believes this wouldn’t be the case at the UFC 300 event. Instead of the duo mentioned, the former MMA fighter said that UFC might opt for the Pereira vs. Adesanya bout.
During his interview with From the Stands, Askren expressed his doubts over the certainty of McGregor’s return. Alongside this point, he pointed out that a fight between Pereira and Adesanya could excite MMA fans, given the history of the two. As Askren stressed, there is a possibility of Adesanya moving to the light heavyweight division in order to respond to the repeated callout of Pereira.
“I thought maybe he’d go bump up to fight Pereira again,” Askren said. “Because Pereira seems to want that. So I think that’s one route you could go: Pereira vs. Adesanya. I think people would be into that. People would be really into the return of Conor McGregor, but I’m not it’s actually happening, we’ve been waiting and waiting and waiting, it may happen, it may not, we’ll see.”
While Askren’s claim sounds interesting, it should still be taken with a pinch of salt. Prior to Askren’s statement, Eddie Alvarez, a professional mixed martial artist and a BKFC boxer with experience with McGregor and Chandler, also shared another possibility about the UFC 300 headline. According to Alvarez, UFC could push McGregor to fight Nate Diaz. As the fighter explained, this setting could be more beneficial for the UFC as it could be “one of the largest pay-per-views ever in UFC history.”