“Bob Chapek, do you copy! I repeat, Bob Chapek - Do You Copy!”
Those were the words from Conor McGregor’s latest missive in his increasingly public battle with Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) over his fighting future. McGregor has been on the sidelines “retired” since June — a response, he claims, to UFC’s unwillingness to work with him on setting up bouts. Now, the increasingly restless Irish sports star is trying to take things over UFC president Dana White’s head, right to the top of the corporate food chain.
Bob Chapek is the CEO of Disney, which owns ESPN, which is the pay-per-view (PPV) and broadcast partner of UFC. While technically not White’s boss, Chapek did flex his muscles over the fight promotion when Disney pulled the plug on White’s plans to hold UFC 249 on April 18, 2020, in the midst of the initial Coronavirus pandemic lockdown. So maybe he thinks pointing out how much money the mouse is losing having him idle on the sidelines will work in drawing UFC into more fruitful negotiations?
McGregor is currently attempting to force another boxing mega fight into existence against Manny Pacquiao, a repeat of his 2017 rogue booking with Floyd Mayweather. UFC was deadset against that as well until the momentum of the fight ended up making it inevitable. Is all this noise McGregor making part of a similar effort for the Pacquiao fight?
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The very first shot of the fight. Right on the button through the guard. I didn’t even put anything into that shot. Just placed it. It was hard for me not to dwell on the full 12 rounds that were potentially ahead of me and hold back my shots early. Still tho right on the absolute button. The first punch thrown. Remember the experts saying I wouldn’t land even 1 lol. I landed more than them all. The picture above is the very first punch of the fight thrown, and landed, and inside the very first second of the fight. Bums all of them “experts”. Listen to none of them! Really I should have just sat right thru that shot and took his head off and fuck the distance. If it didn’t work out just give him a good boot into the neck and get DQ’d and fined and who’d give a fuck. I’m upset I fully followed the rules for that fight to be honest. Floyd deserved a volley at the least. A shoulder even, break the face. Manny not so much tho I don’t think, but I will see how the build up goes and wait to hear what bitter old Freddie Roach has to say and then make a decision. My Whiskeys at half a b and climbing I could take a fine. I’d rather fight MMA anyway not sure why I’ve been held back like this, it’s borderline criminal at this stage. The biggest number generator in the game asking for four fights since February this year and getting left on seen. It’s pretty fucked up when I keep thinking of it. I’ve been right here this whole time. Bob Chapek, do you copy! I repeat, Bob Chapek - Do You Copy! Anyways boxing it is for now and I’m up for this! I hope no bottling takes place here. I’m already agreeing to these limited rules and holding back my full array of weapons. Let’s get it going guys. Much love, the champ champ
“I’d rather fight MMA anyway not sure why I’ve been held back like this, it’s borderline criminal at this stage,” McGregor wrote on Instagram. “The biggest number generator in the game asking for four fights since February this year and getting left on seen. It’s pretty fucked up when I keep thinking of it. I’ve been right here this whole time. Bob Chapek, do you copy! I repeat, Bob Chapek - Do You Copy! Anyways boxing it is for now and I’m up for this.”
One day later, McGregor was at it again on Twitter, this time putting Chapek’s name front and center.
Pick someone for a hidin, Bob Chapek.— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) September 27, 2020
On the house for the mouse, my pleasure ❤️ @disney
“Pick someone for a hidin, Bob Chapek,” he wrote. “On the house for the mouse, my pleasure.”
We doubt very much any fight McGregor participates in will be “on the house” but hey, it’s not a bad rhyme and it’s all about getting as many eyes on him as possible so UFC can’t continue to ignore him and pretend he’s not interested in fighting. Why do McGregor and UFC seem to have such trouble coming to terms when McGregor’s stated interest since the start of 2020 was to fight three or four times over the years, generating buckets and buckets of cash for everyone?
Maybe it’ll all make sense a few years from now when the behind-the-scenes truths start leaking out. But for now, we just have to sit back and see what the hell comes out of this messy negotiation period that may end in McGregor fighting Pacquiao in boxing, a courtroom case, or some other kind of “fun stuff.”