After weeks of speculation, it is finally official: UFC 205 has its headlining fight.
A long-rumored lightweight title fight between 155 lbs. champion Eddie Alvarez and 145 lbs. champion Conor McGregor was made official earlier tonight by ESPN and UFC Vice President of Public Relations Dave Sholler.
Sholler further confirmed that McGregor will not relinquish his featherweight title to take this fight.
The news was first reported by Talk MMA, then confirmed by ESPN's Brett Okamoto.
If he wins at UFC 205, Conor McGregor will become the third fighter in UFC history to win a championship in two weight classes, and the first ever to hold the belts simultaneously.
He was last seen in action at UFC 202, when he avenged his previous loss to Nate Diaz at welterweight. McGregor earned a Fight of the Night award for his performance, and is reported to have earned upwards of $3 million, plus a PPV bonus. This record setting purse broke the previous top salary, earned by Brock Lesnar at UFC 200, by half a million dollars.
McGregor has not defended the featherweight title since defeating Jose Aldo to take it at UFC 194 in December 2015.
Lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez meanwhile defeated Rafael dos Anjos via TKO in July to win the title. This will be his first return to the Octagon since then, and the first UFC title defense of his career. Alvarez is currently on a three-fight win streak, and prior to his UFC debut in 2014, was the reigning Bellator Lightweight Champion.
For a preview of how this match-up may play out, check out our in-depth analysis of Eddie Alvarez vs. Conor McGregor here.
UFC 205 will take place on November 12, 2016 at Madison Square Garden in NYC.
The current card is as follows:
- Tyron Woodley (c) vs. Stephen Thompson
- Joanna Jędrzejczyk (c) vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz
- Donald Cerrone vs. Kelvin Gastelum
- Miesha Tate vs. Raquel Pennington
- Frankie Edgar vs. Jeremy Stephens
- Tim Kennedy vs. Rashad Evans
- Tim Boetsch vs. Rafael Natal
- Jim Miller vs. Thiago Alves
- Lyman Good vs. Belal Muhammad
- Liz Carmouche vs. Katlyn Chookagian