Top UFC star Conor McGregor took to Twitter in the early morning hours of Tuesday to announce his retirement from MMA.
McGregor wrote, “Hey guys quick announcement, I’ve decided to retire from the sport formally known as ‘Mixed Martial Art’ today. I wish all my old colleagues well going forward in competition. I now join my former partners on this venture, already in retirement. Proper Pina Coladas on me fellas!”
It will be interesting to see if this is a legitimate retirement or if McGregor is pulling another stunt.
McGregor, the biggest draw in UFC history, had been rumored for a fight with Donald Cerrone this summer, but Cerrone has been booked for a May fight instead. It was reported that UFC wanted McGregor to be in the co-main event and he turned that down. McGregor then told fans over the weekend that he would be OK with working the co-main event or even the undercard, as long as UFC gave him company shares.
“I’m ready to fight,” McGregor said in Chicago (h/t to MMA Fighting). “I’ve said that, no problem. If the UFC wants me to slide into that co-main event and help, what that is, me sliding into the co-main event, it’s boosting their brand over fighter rhetoric that they have. There’s no problem with that. But if they want me to push that – and I have no problem pushing that – give me my rightful shares in the UFC company. That’s all I ask. You can put me on the first fight of ESPN+, no problem. So let’s see how it goes.”
McGregor was arrested earlier this month in Miami for allegedly smashing the phone of a man who was trying to take a photo of him at a hotel. The same man is suing him.
McGregor appeared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon this week and said he was in talks to fight this summer. He said, “We’re in talks for July. So we’ll see what happens. A lot of politics going on. The fight game is a mad game. But again, like I said, and to my fans, I am in shape and I am ready.”
McGregor also said he does not need to fight because he is financially set due to his past success as UFC’s highest-paid fighter, and the success of his Proper 12 whiskey company. He said, “In reality, I can pick who I please. I’ve done a lot, I’ve fought a lot. I’ve never pulled out of contests. I’ve gone through some crazy injuries, some crazy external situations that many a man would sprint for the hills if it happened to them. But I stood firm, done my piece for the company. … Like I said, this whiskey is my baby. I have a lot of great entities. I don’t necessarily need to fight. I am set for life, my family is set for life. We are good. But I am eager to fight. So, we will see what happens. I’m just staying ready, as I like to say.”
The former UFC Featherweight and Lightweight Champion tweeted about retiring back in 2016 after UFC pulled him from the UFC 200 event because of how he was unwilling to work a media tour for the event. He obviously did not retire then.
McGregor last fought in October 2018 at UFC 229, losing the Lightweight Title to Khabib Nurmagomedov. McGregor was then suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission for the post-fight melee, but he would be eligible to fight again in April. If he’s serious about retiring, he will be leaving the sport with a record of 21 wins and 4 losses.
You can see his retirement tweet below:
Hey guys quick announcement, I’ve decided to retire from the sport formally known as “Mixed Martial Art” today.
I wish all my old colleagues well going forward in competition.
I now join my former partners on this venture, already in retirement.
Proper Pina Coladas on me fellas!
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) March 26, 2019