White slaps down tantalising Conor claim
DANA White has denied claims Conor McGregor's comeback fight against Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone is a done deal.
The UFC boss said an agreement for the lightweight showdown was "not even close" at the moment, The Sun reports.
UFC commentator Joe Rogan announced during his podcast on Sunday that McGregor, 30, would next face Cerrone, 35.
But when asked about this, White told TMZ: "Not true. It's not even close to being done."
McGregor is serving a six-month suspension for his part in the brawl following his loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov in October.
White has given him the green light to return to the UFC and he could make his comeback to the Octagon as early as April.
When speaking to MMAjunkie earlier this month, White admitted he would like to see McGregor face Cerrone.
The 49-year-old said: "I'd like to see Conor fight this summer. Those two want to fight each other - they've both earned it.
"Cowboy's fought anybody we've ever put against him.
"We throw this young killer (Alexander) Hernandez at him, Cowboy's the underdog and he goes in and does it the way he did it, then Conor's fought everybody.
"If these two want to fight, I'm down."
The American challenger called the Irishman out after he defeated Hernandez in January.
After the win, which moved him to a record of 34-11-0, Cerrone said: "I want top five. I even want Conor if he'll agree to it."
And McGregor duly accepted, replying via Twitter with: "For a fight like that Donald, I'll fight you. Congratulations."
But the former two-weight world champion is open to a trilogy fight with old foe Nate Diaz.
And McGregor claimed it would be an "honour" to take on UFC icon Anderson Silva.
This article first appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission