Former UFC featherweight and lightweight champion Conor McGregor said that he is retiring from fighting. In a Twitter post on Sunday, McGregor posted a photo with his mother Margaret that he said was from one of his “World title wins”.
McGregor had earlier tweeted twice about retirement from fighting, both times when he was involved in arguments with the UFC. His last fight came in January against Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone which he won and he has since expressed interest to face a number of opponents.
He was tied this summer to face the current top lightweight contender Justin Gaethje. A trilogy fight with Nate Diaz was also something he expressed interest in repeatedly and he also tweeted on May 28 that he had accepted a proposal for a fight against MMA legend Anderson Silva.
UFC President Dana White told reporters after UFC 250 on Saturday that people have been “acting strangely” lately due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Nobody is pressuring anybody to fight,” White said. “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.”
White had earlier said that the best option for McGregor will be to wait and face the winner of Gaethje’s title challenge against Khabib Nurmagomedov.
With a 22-4 record in MMA overall, McGregor has just two losses in the UFC — against Diaz, which he later avenged in the second fight between the pair, and against Nurmagomedov. In 2016, he beat Eddie Alvarez to win the lightweight belt and thus became the first in the UFC to hold titles in two different weight classes.
Last month, McGregor said that a rematch with Floyd Mayweather was “inevitable” and he would win the match this time.
McGregor was responding to the praise he got from boxing great Mike Tyson for his performance in his fight against Mayweather in 2017.
“It’s a spectacle, but listen, this is where it’s not a spectacle,” Tyson said on the podcast, ‘Hotboxin’ with Mike Tyson’. “He never really had a boxing match in his life, right? He went 10 rounds with the greatest fighter of the last 100 years of boxing… He went 10 rounds, scored punches on the greatest fighter in the last 100 years. Did he accomplish something? … Look at what he had to fight against and look at what he did when he fought against him.”
McGregor later in a tweet thanked Tyson and said that he will beat Mayweather in their second bout. “Thank you Mike, and just know that for the inevitable rematch, with the knowledge I now hold of Floyd’s style, plus under the tutelage of my old school boxing coach, I will crack the puzzle, and I will beat Floyd. I promise my life on it. It is great to see you back Iron Mike.”
The match, also known as “The Money Fight,” was highly publicised with an extensive promotion tour before it in which the two fighters, particularly McGregor, engaged in a war of words. Mayweather extended his unbeaten streak to 50-0 after beating McGregor via technical knockout in the 10th round.
The fight was part of an extensive hiatus McGregor had taken from mixed martial arts and he went on to fight twice in the UFC, losing to Khabib Nurmagomedov in 2018 and then beating Donald Cerrone in 2020.