It's been a weird day for mixed martial arts. Sometime this afternoon the sport's biggest star, Conor McGregor, left a confusing tweet about retiring for the fans to freak out about… without any explanation.
His coach, tweeted something similar, but left another message on facebook about looking for job opportunities for a former plumber that seemed to indicate it was all just a big joke. Just as MMA journalists everywhere were about to pick up and leave work, content in believing the retirement talk was a hoax, Dana White appeared on Sportscenter with some concerning news:
Conor McGregor is no longer scheduled to face Nate Diaz again on July 9th on the stacked UFC 200 card. The reason? Conor, currently training in Iceland, reportedly refused to fly to Las Vegas to promote the fight.
"Is Conor McGregor retiring? Only he can answer that question. I don't know, but Conor McGregor is not fighting at UFC 200," Dana White said tonight.
"He didn't want to. He's in Iceland training and he felt leaving right now would hurt his training and getting ready for this fight," Dana explained. "But every other fighter on the card was coming. I get accused of coddling Conor all the time, but at the end of the day, I respect Conor.
"But it doesn't make you exempt for showing up for the press conferences and all the promotional stuff that we have to do. We spend a lot of money with this stuff, and you have to do it, man.
"Obviously we still have a good relationship with Conor. I respect Conor as a fighter and I like him as a person. But you can't decide to not show up for these things."
Does this mean Conor is actually retiring? Why would a fighter who prides himself in his promotion skills not show up? Is this all just a clever negotiating tactic? What is going on?!
Stay tuned to Fightland as the news develops.