The three main attractions of UFC 197 addressed the Conor McGregor situation during open workouts last night.
It’s the hot topic in MMA that has overshadowed a huge pay-per-view. Inevitably, the question was raised to the UFC 197 combatants among their usual discussion of fight preparation. While Jon Jones and Demetrious ‘Mighty Mouse’ Johnson were cool with the apparent decision that ‘The Notorious’ made in his sensational tweet, the flyweight champion, along with opponent Henry Cejudo, were adamant that press conferences are a part of the deal.
“I don’t think he’s gonna retire,” said Jones, via MMAWeekly.
“Conor is a fighter. He is a winner and I don’t think he would want to go out on a loss, because if he doesn’t fight again then his legacy is really that Diaz fight. Hats off to him for standing up for what he believes is right. At the end of the day business is business.”
“Fights like this will help other fighters in the future, so I respect his balls and his willingness to fight for what’s right.”
The co-main event sees fellow pound-for-pound contender and flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson defend his crown against Olympic gold medallist Henry Cejudo. Both men had plenty to say on the Irishman.
Cejudo, who won his prestigious medal in wrestling, sided with the UFC on the standoff.
“He’ll be back, man,” Cejudo stated. “Not everything that shines is gold. He’ll be back.”
“I think it’s good for the UFC. They need to start stepping up and doing things like that. If you think you’re higher than UFC, if you think you’re better than all the other fighters, then maybe you should get pulled. So, I think it’s a good discipline.”
Johnson concurred. While a fan of McGregor, Mighty Mouse backed the UFC in not ceding to Conor’s demand of not attending his promotional duties.
“If the man wants to retire, he can do whatever he wants. But, good thing the UFC was like, ‘if you’re not going to come to the press conference, we’re going to have to pull you.’ Conor was like, ‘sweet, thanks for the cheese, I’m out.’ They’re both doing their thing.”
UFC 197 takes place this weekend at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, with Jon Jones now due to face Ovince Saint Preux for the interim light heavyweight title following Daniel Cormier’s withdrawal due to injury.