MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: Conor McGregor confirms he’s not retired and UFC announces a number of new matchups

Conor McGregor demands lighter PR schedule Conor McGregor broke his silence on Thursday and made it clear that he’s not retired and is willing to fight at UFC 200.  The UFC featherweight champion made it clear though that he wants a lighter PR schedule ahead of the matchup, which he explains his his statement here via Facebook “I am just trying to do my job and fight here. I am paid to fight. I am not yet paid to promote. I have become lost in the game of promotion and forgot about the art of fighting. There comes a time when you need to stop handing out flyers and get back to the damn shop. 50 world tours, 200 press conferences, 1 million interviews, 2 million photo shoots, and at the end of it all I’m left looking down the barrel of a lens, staring defeat in the face, thinking of nothing but my incorrect fight preparation. And the many distractions that led to this. Nothing else was going through my mind. It is time to go back and live the life that got me this life. Sitting in a car on the way to some dump in Conneticut or somewhere, to speak to Tim and Suzie on the nobody gives a fuck morning show did not get me this life. Talking to some lady that deep down doesn’t give a fuck about what I’m doing, but just wants some sound bites so she can maybe get her little tight ass a nice raise, and I’m cool with that too, I’ve been giving you all raises. But I need to focus on me now. I’m coming for my revenge here. I flew an entire team to Portugal and to Iceland to make my adjustments in preparation and fix my errors I made with the weight and the cardio prep. With the right adjustments and the right focus, I will finish what I started in that last fight. I will not do this if I am back on the road handing out flyers again. I will always play the game and play it better than anybody, but just for this one, where I am coming off a loss, I asked for some leeway where I can just train and focus. I did not shut down all media requests. I simply wanted a slight adjustment. But it was denied. There had been 10 million dollars allocated for the promotion of this event is what they told me. So as a gesture of good will, I went and not only saved that 10 million dollars in promotion money, I then went and tripled it for them. And all with one tweet. Keep that 10 mill to promote the other bums that need it. My shows are good. I must isolate myself now. I am facing a taller, longer and heavier man. I need to prepare correctly this time. I can not dance for you this time. It is time for the other monkeys to dance. I’ve danced us all the way here. Nate’s little mush head looks good up on that stage these days. Stuff him in front of the camera for it. He came in with no shit to do that last one. I’d already done press conferences, interviews and shot the ads before RDA pulled out. Maybe I’ll hit Cabo this time and skull some shots pre-fight with no obligation. I’m doing what I need for me now. It is time to be selfish with my training again. It is the only way. I feel the $400million I have generated for the company in my last three events, all inside 8 months, is enough to get me this slight leeway. I am still ready to go for UFC 200. I will offer, like I already did, to fly to New York for the big press conference that was scheduled, and then I will go back into training. With no distractions. If this is not enough or they feel I have not deserved to sit this promotion run out this one time, well then I don’t know what to say. For the record also – For USADA and for the UFC and my contract stipulations – I AM NOT RETIRED.”   Randa Markos vs. Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger added to UFC Fight Night 89  UFC officials announced Thursday that strawweights Randa Markos and Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger will clash at UFC Ottawa in June. Markos (5-3) heads into this fight off a unanimous decision loss to Karolina Kowalkiewicz at UFC on FOX 17 in December. The Canadian ‘s 1-2 in the UFC with a win over Aisling Daly and two losses to Kowalkiewicz and Jessica Penne. Jones-Lybarger (6-2) came up short in her UFC debut losing to Tecia Torres at UFC 194 in December. The loss snapped her four-fight win streak. UFC Fight Night 89 takes place June 18 at The Arena at TD Place in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Here’s an updated look at the card. Rory MacDonald vs. Stephen Thompson Donald Cerrone vs. Patrick Cote Steve Bosse vs. Sean O’Connell Sam Alvey vs. Elias Theodorou Jason Saggo vs. Leandro Silva Misha Cirkunov vs. Ion Cutelaba Olivier Aubin-Mercier vs. Thibault Gouti Krzysztof Jotko vs. Tamdan McCrory Colby Covington vs. Alex Garcia Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger vs. Randa Markos   Noke vs. Nakamura and other matchups set for UFC Fight Night 91 in South Dakota Thursday UFC officials announced Kyle Noke vs. Keita Nakamura is slated for UFC Fight Night 91 in South Dakota. Noke (22-8-1) heads into this matchup off a controversial split decision loss to Alex Morono. Prior to that, the Jackson/Winklejohn product earned back to back victories over Jonavin Webb and Peter Sobotta. Nakamura (31-7-2) is coming off a unanimous decision loss to Tom Breese at UFC Fight Night 84. The Japanese fighter is 1-4 in his UFC career. Also added to the card, Tim Boetsch (18-10) moves back down to middleweight to clash with Josh Samman (12-3), while Scott Holtzman (8-1) takes on lightweight Cody Pfister (12-5-1) UFC Fight Night 91 takes place July 13 at Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls, S.D. Here’s an updated look at the card. Tim Boetsch vs. Josh Samman Scott Holtzman vs. Cody Pfister Keita Nakamura vs. Kyle Noke   UFC on FOX 20 adds Felice Herrig vs. Kailin Curran Another strawweight bout was announced Thursday by UFC officials as Felice Herrig takes on Kailin Curran. Herrig (10-6 ) is 1-1 in the UFC after she picked up a submission victory over Lisa Ellis and fell short in a unanimous decision defeat to Paige VanZant. Curran (4-2) is 1-2 in the UFC and heads into this matchup off a submission victory over Emily Kagan back in December. UFC on FOX 20 takes place July 23 at United Center in Chicago. Here’s an updated look at the card. Ryan LaFlare vs. Alexander Yakovlev George Sullivan vs. Hector Urbina James Moontasri vs. Alex Oliveira Luis Henrique vs. Dmitry Smolyakov Kailin Curran vs. Felice Herrig  

Written by James Lynch

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