Conor McGregor pulled from UFC 200: A marketing hoax?

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Conor McGregor has been pulled from his UFC 200 rematch against Nate Diaz after he sensationally tweeted his desire to “retire young”. To add more fuel to the fire, Nate Diaz followed McGregor in declaring his retirement plans on Twitter as well. However, could all of this be a marketing hoax by the mixed-martial-art (MMA) promotion just to get some added heat on the pay-per-view?

Dana White, UFC president declared that the Irishman was pulled from the marquee bout as he did not show up in Las Vegas to promote the fight. He also mentioned that only McGregor knows whether he has really retired.

“Conor did not want to come to Las Vegas and film the commercial and be a part of the marketing. He’s in Iceland training. Is Conor retiring? Only he can answer that question. I don’t know.” White said in an interview with ESPN.

The internet has gone crazy since two of UFC’s biggest fighters tweeted of retiring from the sport. However, if one could dig a bit deeper, this could all be a marketing ploy to further build heat on the McGregor vs. Diaz rivalry.

The timing of the news couldn’t have come at a perfect time with both fighters choosing to declare their decisions, right after one another. Moreover, during his interview, White did mention “He’s in Iceland training”. Now, if McGregor had already decided of leaving the sport, would there be any particular reason for him to train ahead of his bout against Diaz on July 9, 2016?

Meanwhile, many suggest that if McGregor has indeed decided to retire, it could be down to the fact that he was rocked by the death of Joao Carvalho in Dublin. 28-year-old Carvalho died within days after competing at a Total Extreme Fighting event. He suffered a technical knockout by one of McGregor’s team-mate’s, Charlie Ward.

The 27-year-old fighter from Dublin, Ireland took to Facebook to describe the incident as “truly heartbreaking”.

Photo courtesy: Andrius Petrucenia/Wikipedia.org

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