Conor McGregor hasn’t fought in the UFC since November of 2016 when he knocked Eddie Alvarez out in the second round. He hasn’t fought competitively in any discipline since last August’s defeat to Floyd Mayweather in a boxing match.
But McGregor has repeatedly said that his career isn’t over, and that he plans on fighting again. An Instagram post on Thursday seemingly indicated that he’d be willing to fight sooner rather than later, but the UFC put the kibosh on his efforts because they couldn’t produce the money necessary to pay him.
I am fighting again. Period. I am the best at this. I put my name forward to step in at UFC 222 to face Frankie Edgar when Max Holloway pulled out, but I was told there wasn't enough time to generate the money that the UFC would need. I was excited about bouncing in last minute and taking out the final featherweight, without all the rest of the stuff that comes with this game. Please respect the insane amount of work outside the fight game that I have put in. On top of the fighting. I am here. It is on them to come and get me. Because I am here. Yours sincerely, The Champ Champ™
In the Instagram post, McGregor claims that he volunteered to fight Frankie Edgar at UFC 222 this March after Max Holloway pulled out. Holloway pulled out of the fight because of a leg injury, and the UFC made the decision to replace him against Edgar with Brian Ortega, who is unbeaten in 13 career fights.
By publicly claiming he wanted the fight with Edgar, McGregor is firmly bouncing the ball back into the UFC’s court. He’s willing to fight, but the company just needs to open up their wallets and pay him.
If the company isn’t willing to pay him, they’re going to end up looking like the bad guys here. And they really can’t put McGregor’s return off for too much longer, can they? Eventually, if the cries grow loud enough and the company continues to ignore them, they’ll have missed the boat on cashing in on McGregor’s ridiculous starpower.