Two days after his unexpected retirement announcement and the UFC's subsequent decision to pull him from UFC 200, Irish MMA superstar Conor McGregor has released a statement on Facebook confirming what we all predicted: He's not really retired!
"I am just trying to do my job and fight here. I am paid to fight. I am not yet paid to promote," McGregor says in the statement, which explains that he's still training and still ready for UFC 200.
All of the interviews, press conferences and photo shoots have become a distraction, leading to "incorrect fight preparation," the statement says. Coming off of his loss to Nate Diaz at UFC 196, McGregor wants to avoid all that noise.
"I need to focus on me now. I'm coming for my revenge here," the statement says. "I can not dance for you this time. It is time for the other monkeys to dance."
McGregor's statement makes it clear that he wants back in at UFC 200. The retirement announcement, he explains, was a way to promote the fight without have to do the work typically required to promote a fight.
"There had been 10 million dollars allocated for the promotion of this event is what they told me," he said. "So as a gesture of good will, I went and not only saved that 10 million dollars in promotion money, I then went and tripled it for them. And all with one tweet."
There you have it: McGregor pulled a classic publicity stunt. Now, he just wants to "go back into training."
The ball's now in Dana White's court. As McGregor says in the statement: "I feel the $400 million I have generated for the company in my last three events, all inside 8 months, is enough to get me this slight leeway. I am still ready to go for UFC 200."