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What's next for Conor McGregor?

Words by Nathan Irvine

Return of the Mac?

The UFC's most prized asset, Conor McGregor has just been humbled. Everything leading up to the bout suggested the Irishman would march through underdog Dustin Poirier en route to a bad-blooded rematch with Khabib Nurmagomedov. Even UFC president Dana White fancied it. But it wasn't to be as Poirier shocked the world with a dominating display that resulted in a second round TKO.

To his credit, McGregor took the loss in good grace. He acknowledged that Poirier deserved the win and vowed to dust himself off and come back again in 2021. Whether this means he can put a run of wins together to tempt Khabib out of retirement this year is another question.

With that in mind, what's next for Conor McGregor? Here are some options for his next steps.

Getty Dustin Poirier gets his hand raised

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Return to UFC

The most obvious choice. Although he's the star of the UFC, there's no way Dana White can realistically justify propelling him above current title contenders. Charles Oliveira, Michael Chandler and, of course, Dustin Poirier are all first in line to the gold strap. A matchup that will be of great interest to fans and will definitely put Conor back into contention is against Nate Diaz. The pair share a couple of victories over each other and settling the score via a thrilling trilogy would be a great move for everyone concerned. McGregor would get a chance to prove himself versus a worthy foe. Diaz could make serious bank and get back into contention. And the UFC would likely receive their biggest PPV buys ever. Get it signed, Dana.

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Fight Jake Paul

YouTuber-turned-pro boxer, Jake Paul, wasted absolutely no time sticking the boot into an already downed McGregor. Paul has been calling out McGregor for the best part of six months and immediately took to social media to mock his loss against Poirier. "We were gonna give you $50m. But now I'll give you $10k... CASH" Paul cackled. McGregor would do the combat sports world a favour by giving Jake Paul a straightener, but the risk is all on his side. Jake Paul has everything to gain and nothing to lose by taking on Conor. While if McGregor lost a boxing match to Paul we're not sure he'd recover from the humiliation. On the plus side, he'd likely make more money than he ever has in the UFC by taking on Jake Paul. Decisions, decisions...

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Go into acting

What's undeniable is the presence that Conor McGregor possesses. Whether it's in the octagon, at a press conference or just swanning about in fancy cars - the McGregor is box office. Which is why a career in Hollywood just might be a solid move. Every time he's on camera you can tell he has range. Mocking people with his quick wit. Looking angry and menacing. And at this bout with Dustin Poirier - showing he can be humble. And of course he can beat people up. That's four different genres he could potentially grab a part in. But then again, maybe he's best suited for...

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Head to the WWE

It's a long shot, but also an idea that has been toyed with before by critics and observers of mixed martial arts. WWE's giant pantomime could make for the perfect stage for Conor McGregor to play the ultimate villain. He has the natural athleticism to compete in the "sport" and has the rabid fanbase that would follow and cheer him on anywhere. So why not in the world of WWE?

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