Conor McGregor: a permanent retirement or a temporary one?

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The UFC legend has decided to finish his career, but many still doubt his decision, especially because there are other retired athletes who have returned

Conor McGregor: a permanent retirement or a temporary one?

March 25, 2019, will go down in the UFC's history as the day in which one of its legends said goodbye to the sport, at least until now. It was the 30-year-old Irish star, Conor McGregor, who used his social media to deliver the shocking news and say goodbye to his current colleagues and rivals. "I've decided to retire from the sport formally known as 'Mixed Martial Arts' today. I wish all my old colleagues well going forward in competition," wrote the historic wrestler on his official Twitter account.

Leer en español: Conor McGregor: ¿un retiro para siempre o temporal?

Retreat and upcoming challenges

Conor McGregor managed to maintain an impressive competitive pace throughout his career, which achieved a balance of 21 wins and 4 losses, according to the official website of the UFC. Its effectiveness of hitting reached 49%, the grip reached 63%, the defense of significant hits reached 55% and the defense of demolition managed to reach 70%, which represent figures of a whole professional machine of mixed martial arts.

However, the retirement of this legend was not the expected one, because his last fight resulted in defeat and a grotesque brawl. He was defeated by one of his greatest rivals, the Russian Khabib Nurmagomedov, in October 2018, which caused abuses by both fighters and members of their teams. This embarrassing reaction generated fines and suspensions for both fighters, but for McGregor it also meant the advance of his retirement.

According to the BBC, the now expeller of the UFC will be dedicated to business and to his companies like his own whiskey. These alternatives were built based on money and prestige, both achieved within the octagon. The Irishman had already announced his retirement in 2016, but reversed his decision days after announcing it. However, this time it could be different according to some experts.


Una publicación compartida de Conor McGregor Official (@thenotoriousmma) el


According to the prestigious British media, UFC president Dana White and MMA analyst Nick Peet affirm that the retirement of Conor MacGregor could be definitive this time, as his company projects quite successful and the current conditions of the UFC in terms of the money disbursed by transmissions is different, so the Irishman would not be tempted to return. However, there is still the question: Will Conor McGregor return from retirement as other great sportsmen did?

Retirement is sometimes not a final decision

Professionally dedicating to the sport is one of the most beautiful careers, but also one of the shorter than a human being can choose. The retirement is that definitive moment to which the majority of athletes has fear and much respect, because it means an abrupt change in their lifestyle. However, for some of the greatest athletes, retirement only meant a brief break in their activities.

A great example of an athlete who decided to return from retirement is the case of Michael Jordan, considered by many as the best basketball player in history. According to the newspaper Marca, the American superstar retired up to three times. He retired for the first time in 1993, to dedicate himself to playing baseball. He returned a year and a half later, but retired again in 1998. He finally returned to basketball in 2001 to retire definitively in 2003.


Una publicación compartida de Jordan (@jumpman23) el


Another great athlete who decided to be reborn after retirement was the great Mexican boxer Julio César Chávez. According to Fox Sports, this historic Latin American athlete decided to retire in 2001 after more than 20 years of successful career, but decided to return two years later to meet a rematch with Willy Wise. He continued to agree on battles with great victories until 2005, when Grover Wiley managed to finally defeat him, which caused his definitive retirement.

Read also: What will Gronkowski do while deciding whether to return to the NFL?

According to the newspaper Marca, Michael Schumacher is another sports legend who decided to return from retirement. The German driver retired in 2006, but returned to the brand new Formula 1 in 2010 to retire definitively in 2012 with 43 years of age.


Una publicación compartida de Michael Schumacher (@michaelschumacher) el


Motorsport saw another of its greatest stars return from retirement to reach the maximum glory once again. It was Niki Lauda, whot retired from Formula 1 in 1979 after two terrible campaigns, but returned to compete in 1982 with McLaren to gain his third wrold cup.

The legend of boxing, Sugar Ray Leonard , was another historic athlete who decided to put on his sportswear to return from retirement. According to the newspaper Marca, the mythical American boxer retired when he was 36 years old, but when he was 40 he returned to the ring to fight against Puerto Rican Héctor `Macho' Camacho, who defeated him with the only technical knock out of his career.

The greatest swimmer of all time and the best Olympic athlete in history, Michael Phelps, decided to retire in 2012. However, he decided that the Olympic Games of Rio 2014 were the perfect scenario to return gloriously, and so it was: he won five gold medals being 31 years old.


Una publicación compartida de Michael Phelps (@m_phelps00) el


Other great athletes such as George Foreman, Diego Armando Maradona, Juan Sebastian Veron, Claudio Caniggia, Antony de Avila, René Higuita, Martina Hingins, Björn Borg, Gemma Mengual, Dara Torres, Brett Favre, Adriano, Carlos Humberto Ruíz and Andy Pettitte, among others, also decided to give a new air to their career after retirement.

The way in which the legend of the combat Conor McGregor announced his retirement makes us think that it can be another marketing strategy to further boost his career and his finances. Nobody is certain that the retirement of the Irishman is final, but, if so, the sport will always remember this bad boy of provocative conduct that conquered the octagon based on blows, strength, and dedication.


LatinAmerican Post | Javier Aldana

Translated from "Conor McGregor: ¿un retiro para siempre o temporal?

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