White does not believe a fight between Khabib Nurmagomedov and retired boxer Floyd Mayweather will happen, but said the crossover event would need to take place in an octagon this time if it did.
UFC President Dana White doesn't think a fight between Khabib Nurmagomedov and retired boxer Floyd Mayweather will happen, but said the crossover event would need to take place in an octagon this time if it did.
"We went over there, we boxed him," White told ESPN's 'Get Up!' on Thursday. "If he wants to do it again, he has to come to the UFC. I don't think it's realistic at all, but I didn't think the [McGregor] boxing match was either and it happened. So, we'll see."
The 2017 Mayweather-McGregor fight brought Mayweather out of retirement and back into the ring for the first time since 2015.
Mayweather, 41, beat McGregor by TKO. McGregor boxed against Mayweather, which was promoted by both the UFC and Mayweather's team, but White is not willing to have one of his fighters box again.
He added that he met with Mayweather's team in Los Angeles on Wednesday to discuss a possible fight. While White wasn't necessarily optimistic that the event would actually take place, he also said Mayweather's team did not outright object to the idea.
Mayweather said last month that he was interested in a potential showdown against Nurmagomedov, who challenged Mayweather to a battle of undefeated fighters after his own defeat of McGregor. A messy post-fight brawl broke out between members of both McGregor and Nurmagomedov's entourages.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission suspended both fighters indefinitely as they investigate the incident. Sports Illustrated's Alex Prewitt spoke to White about the suspensions during a Q&A.
SI: What’s the latest on the Khabib Nurmagomedov investigation from the athletic commission?
DW: December is the hearing.
SI: What are your expectations?
DW: I don’t know. I know what I’m hoping. Six months is what I’m hoping.
Once Nurmagomedov's suspension is settled, conversations can continue about a Mayweather-Khabib fight.
"There's a reason Floyd Mayweather wants to fight my guys: There's big money there for him. Obviously, there's big money there for us, but I'm not into making those kind of fights," White told ESPN. "If Floyd wants to come over here—he says he's been wrestling and doing this or that—if he wants to come over and fight in the UFC, he's more than welcome."
Nurmagomedov is under exclusive contract with the UFC. He would need its permission if he wished to pursue any boxing match, which White says has not been discussed.
"I haven't talked to Khabib about it at all," White said. "His interest needs to be in defending his title over here. That's what he should be focused on."