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30th Mar 2017

Tony Ferguson knows who he wants to fight if Conor McGregor vacates UFC Lightweight title

"I want it. The fans want it"

Patrick McCarry

“Battle of California baby!”

Tony Ferguson is doing the media rounds as he tries to take advantage of his elevated status after UFC 209. Despite the fact that his co-main event was cancelled, following Khabib Nurmagomedov’s missed weight cut, Ferguson’s classy reaction marked him out as one of the UFC’s true gents.

‘El Cucuy’ is now campaigning for his next fight in the UFC. While he would not be against finally fighting Nurmagomedov, Ferguson wants assurances that ‘The Eagle’ would actually make it to the Octagon.

His number one target is not even Conor McGregor, who he feels is ducking him by pursuing a boxing match against Floyd Mayweather Jr. that he has little chance of winning. Ferguson is not confident of facing the Dubliner this summer, no matter what UFC president Dana White says.

Ferguson is after Nate Diaz and has even suggested it should be for the UFC Lightweight title. He told UFC Tonight:

“I mean sh*t, vacate the belt right now. Drop it, leave it where it’s at and we’ll fight for the belt at International Fight Week [in July], straight up.

“I know a couple of heads out there. I know the only person that I’d like to go toe-to-toe with and who probably needs a listen thought to is Nate Diaz. I would love to do that.

“For anybody else out there, they really don’t desrve a fight with me. For myself, for the fans, everybody would love to see that fight. Battle of California, baby! Let’s do this.”

It is unlikely that McGregor, who only won the lightweight strap back in November, will be vacating his gold. There is a strong possibility, though, that an interim title would be up for grabs if Ferguson-Diaz goes ahead.

As Tyron Woodley remarked, “I’d definitely watch that.”