Let the Conor McGregor boxing rumors officially commence.
While rumors of a Floyd Mayweather super-fight have been floating around for quite some time, they suddenly have more validity. According to multiple reports, McGregor has been issued a boxing license in the state of California.
“He got a license today and a federal ID,” California State Athletic Commission executive officer Andy Foster told MMAFighting.com. “He’s a California boxer now.”
The issuing of the license comes just days after the UFC stripped McGregor of his 145-pound title and named Jose Aldo the new champion. McGregor had won the featherweight title by defeating Aldo in 13 seconds less than 12 months ago.
Eighteen days ago, McGregor became the first UFC fighter in history to simultaneously hold title belts in two weight classes after a second-round knockout of Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205 to claim the lightweight championship. Now there are legitimate questions of whether he’ll be in the Octagon again.
What is the reasoning behind the push for the license? Will McGregor even use it to step into a boxing ring? Is a super-fight with Mayweather in McGregor’s future?
At this point no one knows for sure, and that’s the way McGregor likes to operate.
Throughout his UFC career, the brash Irishman has kept the UFC at arm’s length and essentially has planned fights on his own terms.
He toyed with UFC president Dana White by hinting at a possible retirement through cryptic tweets in April after being tossed off the UFC 200 card for missing a press conference. And when he does take the stage for a press conference, McGregor steals the show and taunts both opponents and the UFC by claiming ownership.
“I’m the reason we’re even here in the first place,” McGregor said before UFC 205 broke the gate record at Madison Square Garden with an astronomical $17.7 million. “If I wasn’t here, this whole ship goes down.”
He has a point, which he affirmed after the bout, saying he wants an ownership stake in UFC before he fights again.
McGregor has been responsible for two of the highest pay-per-view draws in the history of the UFC and understands his value to the company. He helped fill the crossover-star void after Ronda Rousey’s stunning loss to Holly Holm and subsequent departure – she is set for a return Dec. 30 in a title fight with Amanda Nunes.
This latest flirtation with boxing is likely just McGregor attempting to strong-arm the UFC after taking away his belt. Or it could pave the way to the super-fight everyone has wanted.