Reading reports over the past few days about Conor McGregor's apparent readiness to enter the boxing ring to fight Floyd Mayweather, you'd be forgiven for thinking his UFC career was on an extended hiatus.
Coming off the back of McGregor's very public rift with the UFC last month and his removal from the UFC 200 pay-per-view event, it had looked like The Notorious One's return to the octagon had been put on the back-burner.
According to UFC president Dana White, however, that is far from the case. Speaking on 'The Dan Patrick Show', White revealed he is set to meet McGregor next week to discuss his next UFC fight, and even went on record with a comeback date he described as "a good idea".
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"Conor and I have been talking every day," the UFC boss explained. "We're going to have dinner next week.
"Our relationship is great and we're going to put the little speed bump in the road that happened there behind us and move forward...everything's great."
Despite the whole 'fake retirement' controversy of late-April, White has consistently said that there is no bad blood between himself and the UFC's biggest star.
Nevertheless, in taking a stand and removing the proposed McGregor vs Nate Diaz rematch from the UFC 200 card, and following that up with what is expected to be a Robbie Lawler vs. Tyron Woodley main event at UFC 201, the UFC president had left fight fans wondering just when the 27-year-old would be making his comeback.
The answer could, though, be only one week away:
"He will not be on 200. We're going to get together next week and see what card he'll end up fighting on," said White.
Pushed by Patrick about a potential UFC 202 bout, White described it "as a good idea" and, although he fell short of confirming such a fight, he admitted that, so keen is McGregor to return that "he is ready to fight on 200".
In the context of the increasing Mayweather bout speculation, White's comments will please UFC fans.
According to White at least, rather than focussing his time and effort on putting together a lucrative boxing match, the Irish fighter still appears keen to get his UFC career back on track ASAP.
At present, there is no official date for the UFC 202 pay-per-view, but it will likely fall in August.
If McGregor's rematch against Diaz is pencilled in for such an event, that would effectively end the speculation about a Mayweather fight.
Fight fans: What would you rather see, McGregor's UFC return, or a fight against Mayweather? Have your say in the comments below...
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