Conor McGregor's future cloudy after UFC boss' big admission

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·Sports Reporter
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Conor McGregor is not expected to be ready for a UFC return for at least a year, following his loss to Dustin Poirier. (Photo By Thomas King/Sportsfile via Getty Images)
Conor McGregor is not expected to be ready for a UFC return for at least a year, following his loss to Dustin Poirier. (Photo By Thomas King/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

UFC president Dana White says fans will have to wait at least a year before Conor McGregor will return to the Octagon, revealing the outspoken star is battling several injury issues.

McGregor required three hours of surgery after fracturing his tibia and fibula in his recent injury TKO loss to Dustin Poirier at UFC 264.

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It was an anticlimactic end to what had been an increasingly bitter build-up to the trilogy fight, with McGregor's ankle appearing to buckle beneath him before he was taken from the ring on a stretcher.

McGregor has since undergone a 3-hour surgery to repair his leg and said he will spend six weeks on crutches before he starts to build back up.

How long will that take? A year, according to a Fox News interview with UFC president Dana White.

"It's going to take a year for him to recover from this one before he can come back," White said.

That's a long time for the UFC's most outspoken showman to be out, though it may be a small victory considering there had been plenty of speculation that McGregor's injury could be career ending.

There had also been some debate over when McGregor initially hurt his ankle — Poirier said he broke it earlier in the fight while McGregor insisted he had stress fractures going into the fight. 

White told Fox News that McGregor has actually been dealing with ankle issues for years, then revealed something a bit concerning:

"He's had ankle issues for the last couple of years," he said. 

"He had asked if he could tape his ankles coming into this fight and he got clearance to do it from the Nevada State Athletic Commission and then he opted not to tape them, I don't know why. He has chronic arthritis in his ankles."

Conor McGregor vows to return after UFC 264 defeat

McGregor has since vowed to return to the Octagon and said doctors had inserted a titanium rod into his leg from his knee to his ankle. 

When he does return, he will likely have no shortage of possible opponents, though White has implied a fourth fight against Poirier could be on the table.

McGregor took to social media soon after coming out of his surgery, quickly claiming Poirier's victory was 'illegitimate'.

"Everything went to plan," McGregor said of the operation. 

"Everything went perfect. I'm feeling tremendous. We've got six weeks on a crutch now, and then we begin to build back.

Conor McGregor was taken from the UFC 264 ring on a stretcher after breaking his ankle against Dustin Poirier. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Conor McGregor was taken from the UFC 264 ring on a stretcher after breaking his ankle against Dustin Poirier. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

"It was a hell of a first round. It would have been nice to get back into that second round. It is what it is. That's the nature of the business. A clean break of the tibia, and it was not to be. 

"Dustin, you can celebrate that illegitimate win all you want, but you'd done nothing in there. That second round would have shown all."

Not many would agree with McGregor's assessment that Poirier had "done nothing in there." 

Two of the three judges sitting cageside scored the first round 10-8 for Poirier before the fight was called a TKO due to McGregor's injury.

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