LAS VEGAS — Box office stars Conor McGregor and Ronda Rousey have this week been linked with returns to the UFC.
Speaking to The Sporting Tribune and other reporters Tuesday at the Apex in Las Vegas, UFC boss Dana White clarified that neither will likely happen any time soon — if at all.
“I have no clue,” White said, regarding whether or not McGregor could fight in the UFC this year. “We’ll see how this plays out.”
The former two-weight UFC champion Conor McGregor posted a screenshot on X, formerly known as Twitter, depicting an alleged UFC Fight Pass image that suggested the Irishman would headline the company’s December 16 show at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Though the post has since been removed from X, it sparked speculation that McGregor’s return could be imminent.
That speculation has merit as McGregor this summer starred in The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) opposite Michael Chandler as rival coaches who led teams of fighters to compete against one another.
It is tradition for those TUF coaches to fight each other at the end of the series.
Additionally, McGregor is not retired, has talked about his own comeback quite a lot of late, but is yet to re-enter the USADA drug-testing pool — a system he’d need to be tested in for six months before he could compete again in the Octagon.
There is only one problem with the image McGregor shared, though.
According to Dana White, it was fake.
“I don’t know how that got out,” White said Tuesday. “It wasn’t from Fight Pass.”
He continued: “My team was telling me it was an AI … it wasn’t real. If that was the case, you would have heard it from us first, or me from Instagram.”
White laughed at the suggestion Rousey would be back for a landmark UFC event
The Sporting Tribune asked White about a Daily Mail report that said a source close to Rousey told them that the WWE superstar wanted to return to MMA, and take part in the UFC 300 event which would likely take place at some point in April.
White dismissed the report by calling it “a crock of s—,” while laughing.
Rousey is one of the most successful female combatants of all time thanks to her Olympic bronze medal in judo at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, her historic reign as UFC bantamweight women’s champion from 2013 to 2015, and her numerous honors earned at the WWE.
When we asked White whether he’d welcome her return to the UFC, he said: “Ronda’s having kids.”
White went on to praise the legacy that Rousey left behind her in the UFC.
“Ronda built this whole thing that’s going on with the women here, then her dream was to go to the WWE,” he said.
“She went there and did everything that she did there and achieved. She’s made loads of money. She’s moved on with her life.”