UFC superstar Conor McGregor has claimed that he’s retiring from the sport at the age of 31.
“Hey guys I’ve decided to retire from fighting,” McGregor wrote on Instagram.
“Thank you all for the amazing memories! What a ride it’s been!
Here is a picture of myself and my mother in Las Vegas post one of my World title wins!
Pick the home of your dreams Mags I love you!
Whatever you desire it’s yours ❤️.”
ESPN’s Ariel Helwani has since spoken to McGregor and found out more details about his reasons for retiring.
“The game just does not excite me, and that’s that,” McGregor said. “All this waiting around. There’s nothing happening. I’m going through opponent options, and there’s nothing really there at the minute. There’s nothing that’s exciting me.
“They should have just kept the ball rolling. I mean, why are they pushing [Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Justin Gaethje] back to September? You know what’s going to happen in September, something else is going to happen in September, and that’s not going to happen. I laid out a plan and a method that was the right move, the right methods to go with. And they always want to balk at that and not make it happen or just drag it on. Whatever I say, they want to go against it to show some kind of power. They should have just done the fight — me and Justin for the interim title — and just kept the ball rolling.”
This isn’t the first time that McGregor has threatened retirement and it’s usually been a negotiation tactic to get what he wants.
However, while this does sound suspiciously like that again, McGregor did emphasize that other things like the fact that there’s no fans allowed at the UFC’s events may be having an affect on his desire to compete.
“I’m a bit bored of the game. I’m here watching the fight. I watched the last show — the Woodley-Burns show — I watched the show tonight. I’m just not excited about the game, Ariel. I don’t know if it’s no crowd. I don’t know what it is. There’s just no buzz for me.”
It’s a big change for McGregor, who had entered into 2020 with renewed passion, stating that he wanted to fight 3-4 times this year, but not even ‘Mystic Mac’ foresaw the unprecedented situation that would turn the world on it’s head in the months to follow.
“I had my goals, my plans, the season. I had everything laid out,” McGregor said. “Obviously the world has gone bleeding bonkers at the minute. There’s f— all happening at the minute. They want to throw me up and down weights and offer me stupid fights. I don’t really give a f—. I’m over it.”
News of McGregor’s latest retirement claim is probably the last thing Dana White wanted to hear right now, given that he’s already up to his neck in it trying to navigate the UFC through the pandemic.
On top of that, bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo vacated his title and retired amid rumors his decision may have been a negotiation ploy, while Jon Jones then had a falling out with White over his money, and then Jorge Masvidal followed suit.
Now McGregor has joined in, but White is doing his best to roll with the punches and puts it down to tensions running high during to the current climate where everybody is on edge.
“The amount of people that I have gunning at me right now is insane,” White said at the post-fight presser.
“If that’s what Conor is feeling right now — Jon Jones, Jorge Masvidal, I feel you. It’s not like I’m going, ‘Holy s—, this is crazy, this is nuts.’ Nothing is crazy and nuts right now, because everything is crazy and nuts right now, on a certain level. I totally understand it and get it.”
““Nobody is pressuring anybody to fight,” White told ESPN. “And if Conor McGregor feels he wants to retire, you know my feelings about retirement — you should absolutely do it. And I love Conor. … There’s a handful of people that have made this really fun for me. And he’s one of them.”