Conor McGregor’s potential fight with Floyd Mayweather is at risk of being called off as the UFC fear it will mean they lose their biggest star forever.
The fight between the two stars has been touted ever since they started calling each other out over social media and both men have used promotional opportunities to slate the other.
McGregor is currently in training for a return to the ring – be it an octagon or a boxing ring – but the fight is now in doubt after the executive vice president of Showtime admitted that the UFC are stalling on the talks.
In an interview with Stitcher, Stephen Espinoza said: “The biggest battle in Mayweather-Pacquiao was both guys really thinking that the other wanted to do it.
“That part has happened [with McGregor and Mayweather], so I think the real question - and it's sort of a black box right now - is where's the UFC really, on this? Do they, in fact, want it?
“It's largely at a standstill. There hasn't been a ton of progress and I think if they don't move relatively quickly, people may move on. People may tire of it. But it really is something that needs to happen this year or it probably won't happen.
“Floyd's on 18 months, two solid years come September since he's fought. He's still in great shape, but at a certain point, he's not gonna do it after a while.
“I think part of the fear on the UFC's side is that they'll never see Conor again. If he makes 50, 60, 70 and then you never see him in the ring and he retires in Ireland and so much for their megastar.”