A lot of people are excited to see Conor McGregor take on Floyd Mayweather in the boxing ring next month, but you know who isn’t thrilled? Mixed Martial Arts fans. They’re worried that the sport’s biggest star is exiting stage left for a quick payday, but McGregor’s camp has spent the last several weeks trying to assure MMA enthusiasts that he will return to the Octagon after the Mayweather bout.
But UFC president Dana White doesn’t appear to be convinced.
In what is either an honest and candid take on the Irishman’s career or a brilliant extra piece of promotion for the upcoming match, White told media on Tuesday that he believes McGregor may never fight again.
Per MMA Fighting:
“I had a bunch of guys who worked for us in the UFC and made a bunch of money and they’re gone now. You know? You just don’t know, if he’s going to come in and make this kind of money, he might never fight again,” White said”
“That’s part of the deal, you know?” White said. “This kid has done a lot for the sport, a lot for the company and this is the fight that he wanted, so we’re going to give it to him. And if this is the end of his career, then it is what it is. “
While nothing has been made official, it has been rumored that the McGregor will earn at least $75 million – five times as much as he’s made from any UFC event – for his fight with Mayweather. It’s understandable if after earning that kind of pay check, McGregor no longer wants to get punched in the face for a living.
But again, this could all be a clever marketing ploy from White. What better way to sell this megafight than underhandedly labeling it as a swan song for MMA’s biggest star? Best guess is that we’ll see McGregor back in the Octagon by 2018.