It appears that Conor McGregor’s retirement tweet was no joke after all.
On Tuesday, after the featherweight titleholder announced via Twitter that he is walking away from the sport, UFC President Dana White confirmed to ESPN’s “SportsCenter” that McGregor will no longer rematch Nate Diaz in the main event of UFC 200.
Despite the fact that McGregor’s announcement preceded the UFC’s by several hours, White told ESPN that it was UFC’s decision to pull McGregor from the card due to the Irishman missing promotional obligations this week in Las Vegas. The move meant the betting odds for UFC 200 have had a massive shift.
“We pulled Conor McGregor from UFC 200, and we’re working on other fights right now,” said White. “Conor did not want to come to Las Vegas and film the commercial or be part of any of the marketing that we have. He’s in Iceland training, and it’s not possible.”
White attempted to liken the situation to that of Nick Diaz being removed from the main event of UFC 137 after failing to attend a press conference to promote an October 2011 fight with Georges St. Pierre.
Asked whether McGregor was truly retiring from mixed martial arts, White said he did not know.
“Is Conor McGregor retiring? Only he can answer that question,” explained White. “I don’t know. But he’s not fighting at UFC 200.”
White stated that the organization is currently seeking a new opponent for Diaz, as well as an additional bout to be added to UFC 200. Currently occupying the co-main event spot on the July 9 pay-per-view is a women’s bantamweight title bout between new champion Miesha Tate and challenger Amanda Nunes.