Conor McGregor on Delaying UFC Return and Bellator Dublin Appearance

Conor McGregor on Delaying UFC Return and Bellator Dublin Appearance

Conor McGregor has spoken out on his delayed UFC return after making a surprise appearance at a Bellator show in Dublin on Saturday night.

McGregor was scheduled to make his long-awaited comeback at UFC 303 on June 29, only to pull out of his bout against Michael Chandler in Las Vegas due to injury.

It has nearly been three years since the Irishman last stepped foot in the Octagon, with his trilogy defeat to Dustin Poirier – which saw him suffer a gruesome broken leg – throwing his career into question.

And having finally worked his way back to full fitness, he was recently forced to withdraw from this month’s return against Chandler after breaking his toe.

McGregor opened up on his latest setback after appearing at Bellator – a rival MMA promotion – in Dublin this weekend to work in the corner of fellow Irish MMA star Sinead Kavanagh, admitting a ‘lapse in concentration’ was to blame for his toe injury.

Conor McGregor has spoken out on his delayed UFC return after appearing at Bellator Dublin

Conor McGregor has spoken out on his delayed UFC return after appearing at Bellator Dublin

‘You know, I’m still here rocking away. I had a little lapse of concentration and I had to reschedule the bout, so I’m a little upset about that,’ he said in an interview with Bellator analyst Dan Hardy.

‘But it’s keeping me dialed in, it’s keeping me focused. I can’t rock around like I’m out there showing up, like I’m out there doing my job. The job is not done, so that’s not bad for someone like me.

‘I’m onwards towards the new date and take my lessons learned, it was a lapse in concentration.’

McGregor went on to add that he wants to be ‘100 percent’ and ‘injury free’ when he does make his highly-anticipated return, after claiming he has previously stepped into the Octagon at a disadvantage.

‘If I was any one of these other little bums that can’t move, that have no footwork, they don’t rely on their skills… then I would be ok,’ he said about fighting while injured.

‘And I’ve done it before, I’ve made the walk on a multitude of times under those circumstances and given these bums an advantage over me that they don’t even deserve.

‘So now I’m dialing it in, I’m getting these training camps correct. I’m walking in there 100 percent Conor McGregor, injury free. Perfection is on the menu.’

After withdrawing from UFC 303, McGregor shared photos of his broken toe and the x-ray confirming it on social media this week.

He also explained the lapse in concentration which led to the injury, saying: ‘Man, we were so f****ng super ready for this fight it is absolutely gut-wrenching to take. I want that new Bugatti how I gone justify to myself getting that now without banking these fights.

‘We had a lapse in concentration and engaged in a training session without wearing the full protective gear and I hit the toe off the elbow and broke the toe clean.

‘It needs a few weeks that’s it. I couldn’t justify to my team, or fans, that I make the walk hindered again. That walk has been seen. This next walk has got to be, and it will be, 100 per cent.

‘The fans deserve it and we are getting close. A slight lapse in concentration and a nuisance of an injury was picked up.

‘That’s it. Take the lesson and move forward. I will get this back. I’ve got too. I’ve got two fights left on my contract. I’ve got Bugattis and more yachts on my mind. I’m coming to shine. I gotta just take my time. 

‘Cos I still got yachts and Bentleys and mansions and all the rest. Ya know yaself. But ya get me, I’ll be back. See ya’s soon. See ya at the top. Chandler or not.’ 

McGregor’s reps were forced to deny claims that the former two-weight UFC champion pulled out of his fight against Chandler because he is in rehab for alcohol and substance abuse.

Ex-MMA fighter Chael Sonnen dropped a hint that he had checked into rehab last week, only for McGregor’s people to vehemently deny that story.

A spokesperson told DailyMail.Com on Tuesday: ‘Mr McGregor is with his family.

‘The fight was cancelled after an injury he sustained during training. He is looking forward to a new date.’

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