All of a sudden the UFC has a crisis on their hands. Conor McGregor has added his voice to the ranks of fighters prepared to walk away from the sport. The Notorious rocked the MMA world when he suddenly announced his retirement from the sport – albeit for the third time.
Former two-weight champion Henry Cejudo has also recently retired, while Jon Jones and Jorge Masvidal are both playing hardball with the organization. In short, it’s not the easiest time for UFC President Dana White, who is left to pick up the pieces.
But White is doing what he always does. To sum up, he’s as bullish as ever. Despite learning about McGregor’s alleged retirement at the UFC 250 post-fight press conference, he’s ready to close the door on the Irishman.
First of all, McGregor went on ESPN to explain why he’s ready to quit. He says that he’s not impressed with the way the UFC has handled things. Basically he wants to fight Justin Gaethje for the interim title but the UFC wants ‘The Highlight to unify titles with Khabib before any other lightweight fight. McGregor thinks this is stupid. He said:
“The game just does not excite me, and that’s that. 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.”
When asked what he thinks, White’s reaction was typically full-on. In short, he didn’t hold back. He gave an x-rated description of how he was feeling but emphasized stability is more important than the needs of individual fighters. Keeping the train on the tracks is more important than a few passengers choosing to get off. He told the post-fight press conference:
“If you don’t think I want to throw up my hands and say f** this s**. The amount of people I have gunning at me right now is insane. The amount of people I have gunning for me right now is insane! I don’t give a f***. I’m trying my best to keep the train on the tracks.”
“You don’t have to fight. If these guys want to sit out and retire, if that’s what Conor McGregor, Jon Jones, and Jorge Masvidal are feeling right now, I feel you. One a certain level, I understand it! We’ve been here before, this has happened to us before, more than once too.”