Conor McGregor removed from UFC rankings in latest blow for Irishman

Conor McGregor has been removed from the UFC's pound-for-pound rankings.

The Irishman has lost two of his last three fights – to Khabib Nurmagomedov and to Dustin Poirier – and has now slipped out of the top 15 fighters in the promotion.

His place at the bottom of the list has been taken by new bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling who was awarded the belt when Petr Yan was disqualified for landing an illegal knee at UFC 259 last weekend.

Light-heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz moves up six places to eighth on the list after his impressive points win over Israel Adesanya who himself drops three from third to sixth.

Kamaru Usman, Stipe Miocic, who defends his heavyweight title against Francis Ngannou later this month, and Alexander Volkanovski round out the top five.

Khabib Nurmagomedov remains the No.1 ranked fighter despite announcing his retirement last year. He is yet to give up his lightweight title and retains his spot ahead of Jon Jones.

McGregor, who is preparing for his trilogy with Poirier this summer, remains ranked No.6 in the lightweight division behind Poirier, Justin Gaethje, Charles Oliveira, Michael Chandler and Tony Ferguson.

UFC president Dana White has insisted he will not strip Nurmagomedov and that he will instead hold an unofficial 155lb tournament to determine the next champion.

McGregor's rise through the UFC was initially halted by Nate Diaz in 2016 when the Irishman was chocked out in the second round.

UFC POUND-FOR-POUND RANKINGS

1. Khabib Nurmagomedov

2. Jon Jones

3. Kamaru Usman

4. Stipe Miocic

5. Alexander Volkanovski

6. Israel Adesanya

7. Dustin Poirier

8. Jan Blachowicz

9. Max Holloway

10. Deiveson Figueiredo

11. Justin Gaethje

12. Petr Yan

13. Robert Whittaker

14. Francis Ngannou

15. Aljamain Sterling

But he rebounded to win their rematch on points five months later before knocking out Eddie Alvarez to become the promotion's first simultaneous champion.

Since then however, McGregor was stopped by Floyd Mayweather in a boxing ring before being choked out by bitter rival Nurmagomedov in 2018.

A 40-second demolition of Donald Cerrone 15 months later proved a false dawn as McGregor was sidelined for a year due to the coronavirus crisis.

He was then stopped in the second round by Poirier, more than six years after McGregor had won their first fight inside 90 seconds.

His wish for an immediate rematch looks set to be granted  with both men agreeing to the bout which could take place in July.

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