Conor McGregor, arguably the biggest star in all of mixed martial arts, has retired. The UFC champion made the announcement via Twitter just minutes ago, shocking fans around the sports world.
">April 19, 2016
McGregor is just 27 years old, and has a 19-3 professional record with 17 knockouts. The current Featherweight Champion moved up weight classes for his last bout with Nate Diaz, which he lost by submission in the second round. Before the fight, McGregor had won 15 straight fights dating back to February 12, 2011. He became a superstar in large part due to his oversized personality and brawling style, which famously led to a 13 second knockout of Jose Aldo in UFC 194.
McGregor is an incredibly enigmatic personality, and at just 27 years old, it is hard to know if this is a permanent decision, a business decision targeted at Dana White and the UFC, or something completely different. Either way, it is huge news coming from the biggest male star in one of the fastest growing sports in the nation. In 2015, McGregor revealed that his goal was to be the first fighter to ink a $100 million contract. From NBC News:
"I'm waiting on my next multi, nine-figure contract, which is en route," he told The MMA Hour, a weekly show that focuses on the world of mixed martial arts. "I just let everyone up there know, I let the bosses know and everybody there know what I bring and my worth."
Is this the last we've seen of McGregor in the Octagon? Naturally, we have our doubts. If he has, in fact, fought his last fight, it ranks up there with Calvin Johnson's recent decision to step away from football, or Barry Sanders retirement while still being one of the best running backs in the NFL.
Was there an ulterior motive here? We're sure to find out soon.