UFC 200 is scheduled for July 9, and it has been well-known that the UFC has been wanting to make it their biggest fight card in history. Originally, it was rumored that they wanted to have Holly Holm and Ronda Rousey fight in a rematch in the card’s main event. This would have been without a doubt the biggest moneymaking fight in their history. However, it was derailed on both sides. Holly Holm failed to defend her title against Miesha Tate at UFC 196, while Ronda Rousey does not look like she will be ready by July 9. So common sense would say a high-profile rematch between Tate and Holm would be on the card, right? Wrong. Instead, Tate will be facing largely unknown Amanda Nunes. Neither of the two women’s division superstars will be on the UFC 200 card, which has to be seen as a loss for the UFC. Following these events, drama has recently sprung up surrounding Conor McGregor.
Conor McGregor lost by stunning submission to Nate Diaz at UFC 196 and it was scheduled for the two to have a rematch at UFC 200. McGregor is currently the UFC’s biggest star and a redemption fight was in high demand. However, the UFC world was thrown into chaos when he sent a tweet saying that he was retiring early. UFC president Dana White later said that McGregor was pulled off of the card because he refused to travel for the large press conference. McGregor then posted a statement to Facebook saying that he did not attend the press conference because he wanted to focus on training for the fight instead and essentially said that he had done enough promotion for the UFC. He also pointed to the popularity of his retirement tweet to show how much he attention he brings to the fight. Dana White once again stated that that McGregor was off of the card. A few days later, McGregor then said that he was back on the card in what now seems like a negotiating move, as the tweet garnered a ton of attention, but Dana White still claims he was off the card.
I mostly think that all of this is a promotional hack. This is nothing more than another way to get people to be interested in the card, and I think McGregor will ultimately be fighting at UFC 200. This drama has brought so much attention to the card and I find it hard to believe that Dana White would leave that much money on the table. But this also points to a problem the UFC has. Conor McGregor has almost become bigger than the UFC, but it is not like he can go anywhere else since UFC promotes all the fighters. Floyd Mayweather had a similar situation but he was able to break away from his promoter and still be able to get fights since there are several promoters in boxing. McGregor cannot do this, since the UFC holds all the cards. If this situation is serious, then McGregor can make as many legitimate business points as he wants, but the UFC is in charge and he will ultimately need to compromise much more than they will.