Conor McGregor has ‘followed’ Jake Paul’s boxing manager on Instagram – fueling speculation of a mega-money grudge match.
Paul has named the longtime UFC legend as his dream rival, and once claimed a $50 million offer for McGregor.
The Irishman still largely chose to ignore the callout and barely accepted the 5-0 award winner from the YouTuber.
But now, eagle-eyed fans on social media have noticed that McGregor has recently followed Paul’s manager and mentor Nakisa Bidarian.
Additionally, Biderian was the UFC’s chief financial officer until 2016 and was the front row seat to the notorious’ meteoric rise to superstardom.
But since leaving the UFC, he has helped build Paul into something of a pay-per-view boxing attraction.
And despite McGregor being against talks with the American, Paul has insisted that a lucrative boxing bout has taken place behind the scenes.
He told Graham Bensinger last year: “His [McGregor’s] Managers are good friends of my manager and another advisor of mine and they talk constantly about how to do this.
“They’re like, ‘Yeah we’re down, we’re about it’.”
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Despite Paul’s claim, UFC fighters are banned from competing outside of the MMA promotion unless given special permission.
McGregor was offered the opportunity to face 44-year-old Floyd Mayweather in a 2017 boxing crossover.
But UFC president Dana White spent the last year feuding with Paul, leaving the polarizing celebrity to doubt whether he would bend the rules again.
He added: “I think Dana White is handicap No.
“If Dana will ever kick Connor out of his contract to set up a boxing match, I think it’s needed to do so.”
Paul has already taken out two of White’s former fighters, 37-year-old Ben Askren and then 39-year-old Tyrone Woodley.
This YouTuber ‘AnEsonGib’ joined in KO over ex-NBA player Nate Robinson, 37.
Paul initially beat Woodley on points in August and then signed on to fight 22-year-old Tommy Fury in December.
But Fury exited with a bacterial chest infection and a broken rib, leaving Woodley to fill up on two weeks’ notice, losing only six rounds.
Paul, still a rival with professional boxing experience yet to face, later knocked out UFC pair Jorge Masvidal, 37, and Nate Diaz, 36.
But in an interview on former boxing trainer Teddy Atlas’ podcast, White shrugs off the idea.
White said: “You see how he wants to fight s*** everybody that’s not in his weight class, guys who are big and all this bulls***.
“Go fight a boxer. Hump someone else’s leg, you idiot.”