McGregor: I Need Time To Train

Published on April 21st, 2016 6:18 pm EST

The Conor McGregor saga continued today with a few new developments.

In the morning, McGregor released a statement in which he explained his side of the story. In the statement, McGregor said that he was not retiring and that he simply did not want to tirelessly promote UFC 200. Instead, McGregor said, he wanted to focus on training for an opponent who he had already lost to.

McGregor went on to say that he has promoted tirelessly for the UFC over the past couple of years (true) and that some other people should step up in his place while he trains for the incredibly tough Nate Diaz. McGregor said that he offered to fly to New York for the big UFC 200 press conference, but that this offer wasn't enough for the UFC.

The UFC, which had been holding out hope that McGregor would change his mind and still fight Diaz at UFC 200, responded to McGregor's statement by pulling Nate Diaz vs Conor McGregor from the card. The UFC said that they are looking at securing another opponent for Diaz so that he can remain on the card.


The rift between Conor McGregor and the UFC brings up an interesting point - how much time should fighters be expected to give to the promotion of a card?

A fighter such as Conor McGregor will usually spend 8-12 weeks training for a fight. Should McGregor be expected to take time off of training to do dozens of interviews and fly across the country? What if McGregor is doing more promotion than his opponent - does that create an unfair advantage for McGregor's opponent? In the aftermath of UFC 189: McGregor vs Mendes, McGregor said that he was exhausted from the cross country flights to promote the card. Is this fair to an athlete who is in legitimate danger of being injured every time that he enters the Octagon? Should McGregor really be expected to tirelessly promote a card when he should be training instead?

The UFC, on the other hand, says that all fighters are expected to do their part to promote a card and that it is part of the deal. McGregor disagrees, arguing that he is being paid to fight and not being paid to promote a card.

Many mixed martial arts fighters are coming to McGregor's defense, as they agree that the promotion of the fight shouldn't fall on the shoulders of the fighters, especially given how little they receive compared to athletes in other sports. A top soccer player, for instance, won't have to spend their seasons tirelessly doing promo work for their club - instead, they are focused on playing and training.

The MMA King is keeping his fingers crossed that UFC and Conor McGregor find a common tongue and settle their dispute

The UFC and McGregor will almost surely settle their dispute, and I wouldn't be surprised to see McGregor defend his Featherweight title at the promotion's card in New York later this year. The hopes of seeing McGregor at UFC 200, however, seem to be dashed at this point.

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