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Conor McGregor postponed fights history

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It has been a wild few days for MMA fans, which is the norm if you are a fan of Conor McGregor. The “Notorious” one has gotten involved in a game of “will he, won’t he” when it comes to fighting Michael Chandler at UFC 303.

Now, the latter has won the game, with McGregor removed from International Fight Week on June 29.

The event is still on as planned, but with a new main event – Alex Pereira vs. Jiri Prochazka 2 for the UFC light heavyweight title. UFC 303 airs on ESPN+ PPV in the U.S.

Rumors started swirling that the fight wouldn’t happen after almost two years of build and a whole season of The Ultimate Fighter. Those rumors only grew when an announced UFC 303 press conference in Dublin was canceled the day of, with no reason provided. McGregor cited “a series of obstacles outside of our control” that led to the postponement. 

From there, things just got worse. 

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Ariel Helwani was given constant updates regarding the fight. He initially stated there were no injuries to report, and a few days later, there was “great positivity” that “all systems go” for the fight. However, less than a week later, he said, “Feelers are being sent out for a replacement and/or new main event.” Things finally came to a head when McGregor suffered an injury right before the press conference in Dublin.

McGregor was the main reason for a new live-gate record of over $20 million in ticket sales without UFC 303 even selling out. The event may still be on, and the fights may deliver, but McGregor pulling out is a huge blow. 

Here is a breakdown of pullouts in McGregor fights – whether McGregor did it or an opponent.

McGregor’s absence from UFC 303 isn’t the first time contests featuring the Irish fighter were affected by a pullout. Remarkably, McGregor himself has only withdrawn himself from one fight before this. 

Andy Ogle pulled out of a 2013 fight against McGregor, who fought and beat Max Holloway. Recovering from a torn ACL, his next fight against Cole Miller in 2014 got scrapped due to a Miller thumb injury, and McGregor faced and beat Diego Brandao.

McGregor was initially supposed to fight Jose Aldo at UFC 189 in 2015 for the UFC featherweight title. Aldo had to pull out after suffering a rib fracture, and McGregor faced Chad Mendes for the interim belt. McGregor won and eventually beat Aldo for the undisputed featherweight title in December, needing only 13 seconds to do so.

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The pullout everyone talks about was McGregor missing a rematch against Nate Diaz at UFC 200. Diaz beat McGregor (who was supposed to fight Rafael dos Anjou, who pulled out) at UFC 196, and the two were supposed to fight in July 2016. However, McGregor announced his retirement (one of many), and the UFC pulled McGregor from UFC 200 after White said he refused to film marketing spots for the event. 

“It ain’t just three stops, it’s 30 stops within each stop,” McGregor told ESPN regarding the whole ordeal. “Reasonable media, to me, was New York — where the sport just got legal. Go around, do all the talk shows, all the morning shows, and blow it out of the water where it just became legal.

“I wanted to isolate, focus, get that win back. That’s all I gave a f— about, because essentially all the other s— means nothing. If I lose again, then this whole ship comes down. I’m the one carrying the ship. This whole thing goes down if I’m gone.”

McGregor also hinted he was affected by the death of Portugal’s Joao Carvalho, who passed away following a fight against SBG Ireland teammate Charlie Ward. He eventually fought Diaz at UFC 202, beating Diaz following an epic affair.

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