UFC leaks December return date for McGregor

In the dynamic world of MMA, unexpected developments can send fans into a frenzy, and that’s precisely what happened when rumors emerged about a potential showdown between Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler in 2023.

The journey to this potential clash has been marked by twists and turns. Initially, McGregor and Chandler were unveiled as coaches for ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ 31, a role that often foreshadows an impending battle inside the octagon.

The coaching stint aired from May 30 to August 15, igniting speculations about an epic face-off following the show’s conclusion.

However, McGregor’s intricate situation with the USADA cast a shadow of uncertainty over his return and potential matchup with Chandler.

Recently, the MMA community was set abuzz when the UFC seemingly unintentionally disclosed the fight date for the anticipated Michael Chandler vs. Conor McGregor encounter, leaving fans both exhilarated and on edge.

Earlier today, an Twitter account, @realruebenking, posted a screenshot of what appeared to be the UFC 296 card uploaded onto UFC Fight Pass. The screenshot bore the intriguing text:

“Michael Chandler vs Conor McGregor is officially signed for #UFC296.”

Should this leak prove accurate, McGregor’s long-awaited comeback would occur in the lightweight division. Interestingly, the alleged leak positioned Michael Chandler, the higher-ranked fighter in the 155-pound category, as the headliner.

As fans eagerly speculate on the possible showdown, the backdrop of Chandler’s remarks adds another layer of intrigue. During UFC 292 in Boston, Chandler conveyed his openness to face McGregor, regardless of the latter’s USADA testing pool status. Chandler affirmed, “That, to me, is a very gray area. I can fight Conor with one day in the USADA testing pool or one year in the USADA testing pool. It’s not going to make a difference.”

While anticipation grows, the path to this potential bout hasn’t been without its challenges. UFC President Dana White previously pushed back against McGregor’s aspirations for a December clash with Chandler, suggesting that the highly anticipated matchup might be deferred to early 2024. White acknowledged the significance of the duel, stating, “To not do that fight would be ridiculous, but we’re working on it. I’m hoping we can do it early next year.”