Everything Dana has been trying to do for the past 10 years is take relevance off the fighters and a very long term plan. Now with the ESPN deal it’s done exactly that. Conor was exactly what they needed at the time leading into the sale and now it’s just a totally different business model all together. PPV numbers don’t matter anymore because espn has decided to eat a huge loss from the UFC deal short term to help them transition into digital. There will never be any other huge non title fights. They want to make the belts seem meaningful as much as possible to further legitimize the sport aspect LONG TERM. Huge non title fights are more of a show. This leaves Conor in a spot where he’s never going to make the money he used to off PPV splits and he’s sure as hell never going to co-main. Financially it will make zero sense for him to fight and they won’t budge on the no non-title main event. Same goes for Brock and others...those days are over. With espn the UFC will not be reliant on single fighters to push big PPVs and that’s exactly what they wanted.