Conor McGregor says his UFC return fight set for January

UFC fighter Conor McGregor gestures during a news conference in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019. McGregor announced that he will fight an undisclosed opponent with the event expected to happen in Las Vegas, USA, in January 2020. (Pavel Golovkin/AP)

MOSCOW — Conor McGregor will return to mixed martial arts in January with a UFC fight in Las Vegas.

The Irish fighter said Thursday he will return "fully focused" on Jan. 18 at the T-Mobile Arena.

"That is my comeback fight. It is 12 weeks this Saturday. I am in prime physical condition. I have agreed the date with the company," McGregor said, adding that he knows his opponent’s name but won’t reveal it. "If I was to give you people the name, which I would love to do, I know the UFC would flip it because they are a crafty company."

The 31-year-old McGregor hasn’t fought since losing by submission to Khabib Nurmagomedov in October 2018. He was banned for six months and fined $50,000 for his part in a post-fight brawl.

McGregor said he is targeting two more fights, including a rematch with Nurmagomedov in Moscow. He also aimed a string of insults at the Russian fighter.

After the Jan. 18 fight, McGregor said he would then like to fight the winner of the Nov. 3 bout between Nate Diaz and Jorge Masvidal, followed by either Nurmagomedov or Tony Ferguson.

"I’m going to go through the entire roster like a chain saw through butter," he said.

Nurmagomedov’s father and coach, Abdulmanap, said his unbeaten son would have little difficulty defeating McGregor again.

"If he’s ready for it, then we’ll beat him up in Moscow," Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov told Russia’s state news agency Tass. "It won’t be a rematch, it’ll be another bout with a beating."

McGregor’s return comes as he faces more legal issues. He is facing an assault charge in Ireland over an incident in which he appeared to punch a man in a bar.

He said he is planning to abstain from alcohol and late nights in the run-up to his next fight.

"I am focused here," McGregor said. "I am structured now."

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