When Conor McGregor bashed Tony Ferguson for pulling out of UFC 223 main event: "These fools"

Conor McGregor
Conor McGregor (pictured) called out Tony Ferguson online for when he pulled out of UFC 223 versus Khabib Nurmagomedov years ago [Image Courtesy: @TheNotoriousMMA on X]

Conor McGregor was not reserved in calling out Tony Ferguson for not making it to his UFC 223 headlining fight.

This is an interesting MMA throwback to observe now with the recent news related to the McGregor pull out from UFC 303 on June 29 in a planned pay-per-view main event.

Ferguson was set to clash with Khabib Nurmagomedov in what history came to regard as one of the most cursed fights in MMA history in terms of how often the booking fell off. This was the fourth instance in a total of five times where the Nurmagomedov vs Ferguson fight was booked and eventually scrapped.

Ferguson was set to battle Nurmagomedov for the interim lightweight title while McGregor was still regarded as the lineal 155-pound titleholder. The April 2018 fight would fall out when Tony Ferguson sustained a torn knee ligament. During the UFC 223 fight week when this news of 'El Cucuy' falling out broke to the public, McGregor posted:

"These fools pull out more times than I do with my d***"

Check the flashback post of McGregor calling out Ferguson for pulling out below:


Conor McGregor and past instances of calling out fighters for pullouts

This was not the only instance where Conor McGregor has called out other combatants for pulling out of fights. One of those prior instances famously included the aforementioned Khabib Nurmagomedov being in the Irishman's crosshairs verbally.

Following UFC 205 that saw both men earn victories, the 35-year-old seemed bullish on a suggested fight with 'The Eagle'. McGregor cemented himself as the UFC lightweight champion on that November 2016 night while Nurmagomedov submitted Michael Johnson on the same card.

'The Notorious' addressed the idea of the Dagestan native contending for his belt when he cemented himself as the champ-champ. He quipped:

"He's fought once in eight years. He ain't fight too frequent for my liking. For me to commit to something like that, I need to see solid proof that people are going to show up and he's a consistent pullout merchant. He had a good performance tonight. Fair play to him."

The Dublin native would eventually fight Khabib Nurmagomedov in the highest-selling UFC pay-per-view event of all time as of this writing. He would best Conor McGregor via submission to end their bad blood fueled rivalry. Then, Nurmagomedov went on to retire from the sport in the years subsequent to their October 2018 showdown at UFC 229.

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Edited by Tejas Rathi
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