The long-hyped possibility of a cage match between tech titans Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk appears to be no more after Zuckerberg dismissed Musk for allegedly delaying their anticipated showdown in the ring.
"I think we can all agree Elon isn’t serious and it’s time to move on," Zuckerberg, the co-founder of Facebook, wrote Sunday on Threads, the text-based app Meta launched as a competitor to X, the company formerly known as Twitter.
The social media executives have been teasing the possibility of a mixed martial arts fight since June, calling it a "cage match," an informal term referring to wrestling in a closed-in space that combatants aim to escape from.
But in his latest comments, Zuckerberg said that while he was ready to fight, Musk kept coming up with reasons he couldn't.
"I offered a real date. Dana White offered to make this a legit competition for charity," Zuckerberg wrote, referring to the president of the Las Vegas-based company Ultimate Fighting Championship, who The New York Times has reported was trying to organize the fight.
"Elon won’t confirm a date, then says he needs surgery, and now asks to do a practice round in my backyard instead," Zuckerberg continued. Musk previously claimed he may need surgery before he fights his rival.
"If Elon ever gets serious about a real date and official event, he knows how to reach me. Otherwise, time to move on. I’m going to focus on competing with people who take the sport seriously," Zuckerberg concluded.
Musk has not yet publicly responded to Zuckerberg's latest comments, and a spokesperson for X could not immediately be reached for comment.
Earlier Sunday, Musk tweeted what he claimed was a screenshot of a text conversation with Zuckerberg in which Musk appeared to suggest they meet for "a practice bout" Monday in the backyard of Zuckerberg's home in Palo Alto, California, where he previously claimed to have built an Octagon, a UFC-branded ring, TMZ reported this month.
Their rivalry intensified when Zuckerberg rolled out Threads last month in a bid to compete with X. An attorney for Musk subsequently sent a letter accusing Meta of misappropriating X's trade secrets and hiring ex-Twitter employees to make Threads.
“I’m sure Earth can’t wait to be exclusively under Zuck’s thumb with no other options,” Musk tweeted ahead of the Threads rollout.
Shortly thereafter, in responding to an X user who joked about Zuckerberg’s being trained in the Brazilian combat sport of jiujitsu, Musk responded, “I’m up for a cage match if he is lol.”
Meta’s communications director, Andy Stone, responded to reports of the letter from Musk's attorney, saying on Threads, “No one on the Threads engineering team is a former Twitter employee — that’s just not a thing.”
Musk and Zuckerberg are the second and 16th richest people on the planet, respectively, according to Forbes' most recent list of billionaires.