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John Kavanagh: Michael Chandler and Justin Gaethje are ‘easier’ fights for Conor McGregor

Conor McGregor’s coach thinks Dustin Poirier presents one of the toughest challenges out there.

With Conor McGregor’s next fight scheduled to take place in less than 30 days, members of the Irishman’s camp have been speaking out and talking about the forthcoming fight with Dustin Poirier.

The fight, a rematch six years in the making, is slated to take place on January 27th on ‘Fight Island’, headlining UFC 257.

McGregor’s head coach John Kavanagh spoke to McGregor’s about the bout and what other challenges await ‘Notorious’ in the UFC’s lightweight division.

Specifically, Kavanagh touched on the rumours that former Bellator champion Michael Chandler may be fighting Justin Gaethje in the co-main event of UFC 257 and the prospect that either man could step up in for Poirier if needed.

“I think in terms of opponent difficulty levels, Dustin would be the top of that group,” said Kavanagh (ht MMA Junkie). “So if one is replacing Dustin, there’s no nice way of saying it, but it’s a slightly easier fight. Dustin is the best of those guys, in my opinion.”

Kavanagh was also drawn into talking about the man that many consider the greatest UFC lightweight ever, Khabib Nurmagomedov.

“I think Conor and Khabib are the two best lightweights, and it would be for me, of course from a coaching perspective, it would be phenomenal to see that contest again,” said Kavanagh.

McGregor vs. Nurmagomedov 2 seems unlikely, with the Dagestani appearing steadfast in his desire to retire as UFC lightweight champion and the the promotion’s number one pound-for-pound fighter.

Kavanagh said he expected Nurmagomedov to stick to his word and remain retired. Though, Kavanagh didn’t completely rule out a return, remarking “time will tell”.

No matter what Nurmagomedov decides to do, Kavanagh said he was confident that 2021 would be an exciting year for McGregor.

“Right now we have a very exciting fight coming up in a couple of weeks’ time, and I think 2021, regardless of what’s next for Conor, it’s going to be an exciting year.”