Earlier today, a cryptic message went out from Conor McGregor's verified Twitter account, more or less implying that the featherweight champ was out of the fight game.
While we're still debating the exact nature and motivation behind the tweet, we know one thing for sure (at least for now): Conor McGregor is no longer a part of UFC 200.
On ESPN's SportsCenter, UFC president Dana White confirmed that McGregor had been pulled from the card.
He wouldn't show up for the press conference in Las Vegas this week. According to White, the organization had scheduled McGregor for the conference, a commercial, and a few other marketing video shoots.
"Obviously we still have a good relationship with Conor," White said. "I respect Conor as a fighter and I like him as a person. But you can't decide not to show up to these things. You have to do it."
According to White, McGregor's reasoning behind this was that he didn't want to interrupt his training camp in Iceland.
"Conor did not want to come to Las Vegas and film the commercial or be a part of any of the marketing we have," White said. "He's in Iceland training and that's not possible."
He added that only McGregor himself knows if he's actually retired or not.
While this sounds like a very flimsy excuse, it has happened once before. Nick Diaz didn't show for the UFC 137 press conference in 2011, and was subsequently removed from his scheduled title fight against GSP. In a strange twist however, GSP was injured before the event, and Diaz was invited back to face B.J. Penn on that same card.
Perhaps something similar could happen here, with White and McGregor reaching some kind of understanding. Or perhaps this is all smoke and mirrors, and McGregor's departure from UFC 200 has absolutely nothing to do with a press conference.
Either way, the UFC is now looking for a new opponent for Nate Diaz, and will add another fight to the UFC 200 card in an attempt to make up for this.