UFC Lightweight champion Charles Oliveira said he would like to headline UFC 274 and face-off against Conor McGregor, stating he is “waiting for him”.
After ‘Do Bronx’ beat Dustin Poirier at UFC 269 earlier this month and defended his belt for the first time. It seemed certain to everyone, including UFC President Dana White, that the champ would take on Justin Gaethje next. However, recently, Oliveira has clarified that a fight against the Irishman interests him.
Charles Oliveira on Fighting Conor McGregor
“May would be a wonderful date,” Oliveira said to Sherdog. “Conor challenged me asking a date and tweeted Ireland vs Brazil 2. Not only him, but also myself and all the world wants to see that fight. So let’s make it happen. I’ll be waiting for him in May. It may be in welterweight, lightweight, or middleweight, with my title on the line or not. Just choose, and I’ll be ready.”
Many fans have made their feelings known, believing it should be Gaethje’s turn to compete for the title, but Do Bronx isn’t disregarding McGregor. Both he and Gaethje both lost to Poirier, and despite winning, Oliveira wasn’t convinced by ‘The Highlight’s’ performance against Michael Chandler, suggesting he was almost finished.
“Gaethje was knocked out by Poirier, who I just submitted. He was almost knocked out by Chandler, who I beat via TKO, but I’m a UFC employee,” Oliveira said. “If they choose that I should fight Gaethje next, I’ll be ready too.”
Along with this, there is no doubt that the champion would make far more money in a fight against McGregor, which could take place in his home country of Brazil.
It was a great year for Charles, winning the lightweight belt in May and defending it against Poirier in December. He anticipates a similar level of success in 2022, which could all start with a bout against McGregor in May.
“I’m really happy and moved by that and everything that is going on in my life lately,” Oliveira said. “UFC champion in one of the most difficult divisions. I set records for most submissions and bonuses, [and rank] fifth in the UFC pound-for-pound rankings. To finish that amazing year being chosen as ‘Fighter of the Year’ by one of the most respected outlets in the world, I’m so happy and moved that I don’t know what to talk about. I’m just thankful to God.”
Should McGregor get the shot at the title next, or should the UFC stick to their word and give Justin Gaethje a chance at championship redemption?
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