It appears that even if Conor McGregor makes history at UFC 205 by capturing the lightweight title from Eddie Alvarez, the potential two-division champion won't have long to bask in the glory of being the UFC's first fighter to hold two division world champion belts at the same time.
Speaking on UFC Tonight, UFC president, Dana White dropped the bombshell that, assuming McGregor defeats Alvarez, the Irishman will have to vacate either the featherweight or lightweight belt to avoid holding up two divisions.
“He’ll fight (Alvarez). If he wins, he’ll hold two belts, and then he’ll decide which one he’s going to give back to me, commented White. “You can’t hold them both. He’ll have accomplished this, and then he’ll have to figure out which one he wants to give up ... you can’t tie up two divisions for that long.”
However, McGregor doesn't exactly share the same sentiment as the UFC president. When asked whether or not he would vacate a division belt, "the Notorious" exclaimed that the promotion would need an army to take one of the belts from his shoulder.
It's fair to say that Conor McGregor has done a lot for the UFC, and that he was one of the catalysts for the promotion's $4-billion sale. And with his unrivaled ability to sell pay-per-view shows and market himself and the brand simultaneously, McGregor duly deserves more leeway than other fighters on the roster when it comes to his career.
It could be argued that when it comes to giving McGregor what he wants, the UFC is being overly unfair to its other fighters. One such fighter that feels he is being disrespected by the UFC is current interim featherweight champion, Jose Aldo.
After allegedly being promised a rematch with Conor McGregor numerous times, the Brazilian star eventually had enough, and announced that he would look to leave the sport due to broken promises and lack of trust.
Not only did Aldo find out that McGregor had once again avoided defending his featherweight belt, the interim champ also discovered that McGregor would not be vacating the belt. Instead of allowing the featherweight division to battle it out for a new champion, it would once again be held up, as McGregor refused to drop back down to 145 lbs. To make matters worse, when Jose Aldo was lobbying for a shot at former lightweight champ Anthony Pettis in the hopes of becoming a two-division champion, the Brazilian was told he would have to vacate his featherweight belt.
It's also worth nothing that Conor McGregor skipped a long line of lightweight contenders looking for a crack at Eddie Alvarez and UFC gold. The number one lightweight contender, Khabib Nurmagomedov, even shared his disdain for UFC matchmaking in light of McGregor getting the title shot over himself.
With the world of mixed martial arts rooted in a sense of respect and sportsmanship, many feel that when it comes to the UFC, there is one rule for McGregor and a separate set for everyone else. Instead of giving title shots to those who deserve them, the UFC is opting to put on fight cards aimed at generating the highest PPV sales.
It is key to remember that earlier this year, Conor McGregor was scheduled to fight Rafael dos Anjos for the lightweight belt after decimating the featherweight division in 2015.
UFC 205 takes place November 12, at Madison Square Garden. Conor McGregor will hope to make history by becoming the first UFC fighter to hold two championship belts at the same time. Whether or not he'll get to keep them both is a different story.