Interesting 1-2 from Conor McGregor on the Tony/Khabib cancellation here.
In the first tweet, he mentions that he's in fighting shape right now (which I found strange, given that I don't think he wants to fight right now), and then very honestly admits that if he'd had a fight booked in the midst of this chaos, he would have bought into a bunch of false information about COVID-19 and downplayed it for the sake of the fight. Then, in typical McGregor fashion, he adds that he would've won that fight, too.
I think he's just trying to twist the knife into Khabib a little there, saying, "I wouldn't have pulled out no matter what." Believe that if you will. It's a complete hypothetical so it doesn't matter. Conor's second tweet is the one that really caught my attention, however, because I think his analogy is perfect.
"The fact of this matter is, both Tony and Khabib were engaged in a game of chicken here towards the fight bell."
That is unfortunately what went down - a game of chicken. Khabib "lost", as Conor said, by heading back to Russia in the middle of this pandemic and getting stuck, but the shame of it is that he was put in the position to "lose" this game of chicken in the first place. When shit started getting serious, the UFC probably should have shut down with the rest of the planet so fighters didn't have to take the brunt of it from fans (or their opponents) claiming they're "scared" or "ducking" anybody in this climate, but hey - as Dana discussed with me and many others - they're a "show must go on" company...and I also don't know anything about corona so maybe I'm wrong.
I'm the last one you'll find defending Khabib, and the first to defend Dana White, but I do think that's the fact of the matter.
Aaron Bronsteter broke it down well here…
I do think pulling out of this fight sorta removes Khabib's right to spout that anyplace, anytime, "Send location", "I'm a true street fighter" shit, EVEN IN THE FACE OF A PANDEMIC, because your opponent found a way to show up ready for the fight and you didn't. Oh and also, he's pulled out of a billion fights before.
It's understandable, and I don't blame Khabib one bit; I want to make that very clear - he's probably the most rational one of the bunch right now - but Tony is sort've being who Khabib claims to be right now, is he not? Don't get me wrong, by the way - I feel for Tony too! I don't think Khabib should be stripped but how could you not feel for this guy. Like Conor said, he basically just won the five round pull-out battle 3-2!
This coronavirus is just the biggest asshole around right now. What a real dick it's being. It's ruining everything. Fuck.