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John Kavanagh: I’d ‘bet almost anything’ Conor McGregor vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov happens in 2018

UFC 202 Open Workout Photos Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

The most anticipated fight in the UFC right now has a very good chance of happening before the end of 2018, per a source who knows a little something about the matter.

John Kavanagh, Conor McGregor’s longtime coach, said over the weekend in a chat with MMA analyst Robin Black (h/t MMA Nytt) that he believes we will see McGregor taking on Khabib Nurmagomedov for the lightweight title before the year is out.

“It’s the obvious fight, as his coach and as a fan,” Kavanagh said. “As a fan of MMA, it’s the fight I want to see as well. I would almost bet anything — almost bet anything — that fight happens before the end of the year.”

How confident is Kavanagh that it will happen? The SBG Ireland head man can’t envision a scenario where it does not.

“I can’t imagine it not happening,” Kavanagh said.

McGregor, 29, is due back in a Brooklyn court on charges of assault and criminal mischief on July 26. The former UFC lightweight and featherweight champion, along with about a dozen friends and teammates, attacked a UFC fighter bus after UFC 223 media day in April. McGregor was captured on camera throwing a dolly at the bus, shattering a window and injuring fighters inside.

McGregor’s team is currently negotiating a plea deal and he’ll likely avoid jail time. “The Notorious” went after the bus reportedly because Nurmagomedov was on it. One day earlier, Nurmagomedov and his team confronted McGregor’s friend and teammate Artem Lobov at the UFC fighter hotel in Brooklyn. McGregor’s attack was reportedly in retaliation.

Two days later, Nurmagomedov captured the vacant lightweight title, left by McGregor, with a win over Al Iaquinta. McGregor had not defended the belt after winning it from Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205 in 2016. McGregor and Nurmagomedov have been circling each other for quite some time and the bout is a highly anticipated one.

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