Dubai: American boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr is possibly the king of fake retirement, having hung up his gloves on four occasions only to time and again return to the ring.
Each time, it was more the need for money, than it was to make a statement.
But now Irishman Conor McGregor is making a strong claim for that superfluous title after once more announcing that he is retiring from the sport following UFC 250 in Las Vegas on Saturday.
The Notorious took to social media to post a flippant message saying: ‘Hey guys I’ve decided to retire from fighting.
“Thank you all for the amazing memories! What a ride it’s been! Here is a picture of myself and my mother in Las Vegas post one of my World title wins!”
Come on Conor, you got to be kidding. What’s it with you and this retiring game?
You did it in 2016 and again in March last year when Khabib Nurmagomedov destroyed your ego with his fists. What forced this third retirement? Are you seeking attention, sympathy, respect. Have you run out of ideas to market yourself? Is Round 4 of your sage just around the corner?
Perhaps all of the above or perhaps you’re just bored of being in the sidelines with no paparazzi hanging outside your front door.
But if you want to be taken seriously and be given the respect that you crave as one of the GOATs of MMA, this is the wrong way to go about things.
The public are no fools. They’ve seen great athletes than you quit, just for the sake of quitting, only to return late when their bank accounts plunge.
Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Michael Phelps, George Foreman, Manny Pacquiao and even the original UFC legend Randy Couture, have ridden off into the sunset, only to make a quick U-turn knowing that they need their sport.
Even the best-selling author Stephen King gave fans a real scare when he announced he would be retiring in 2002, only to continue to churn out his creepy novels for years.
British rock band The Who also famously retired after their iconic ‘My Generation’ album in 1982 but changed their minds and would survive to celebrate their 25th anniversary.
But Conor, how do you explain what you have done on Saturday night by just laughing off a serious matter and the possibility of a made-in-heaven rematch with world champion Khabib sometime soon.
A win over the Russian would have helped you cement your MMA legacy, but now you’ve blown it all away with that tweet.
If this is what your heart desires, so be it. But please don’t say that you did not really mean what you said.
Instead of a legacy as one of the greatest Irish fighters in combat sport, you will be remember for playing with people’s sentiments and leave a really bad taste in the thousands of mouths of people who looked up to you!