The gloves are (about to be) off: Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg show no signs of backing down from their commitment to a supposed cage fight.
Rumours of a fight between the Twitter owner and the boss of Meta have been swirling for weeks.
But how did the idea start, is the fight actually going to happen – and who might win if it does?
Be careful what you tweet – it might just come true
The spiralling plans for a bare knuckle fight between the tech billionaires started with an offhand remark from Musk.
Amid a discussion about plans for Threads, Meta’s rival Twitter app, Musk tweeted, “I’m sure Earth can’t wait to be exclusively under Zuck’s thumb”, and followed up with “I’m up for a cage match if he is lol.”
Zuckerberg took the bait. “Send me location” he posted on Instagram alongside a screenshot of Musk’s message.
Musk responded simply: “Vegas Octagon”, the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) arena in Las Vegas.
Is the fight actually going to happen?
UFC president Dana White seems to think so. He claims to have spoken to both men about their willingness to fight.
“Both guys are absolutely dead serious about this,” he told TMZ Live.
Mr White has been in regular contact with the pair and an outline of plans is being drawn up, according to a report by the New York Times.
He told the newspaper it would be an exhibition match, outside official UCF jurisdiction, and would have some kind of charity element.
“It will be the biggest fight in the history of combat sports,” he said.
What fighting experience do they have?
Zuckerberg outstrips Musk when it comes to experience. The Facebook founder has taken up jiu-jitsu and won gold and silver medals in his first ever tournament.
Musk has previously admitted he rarely works out “except for picking up my kids and throwing them in the air”.
“I have this great move that I call ‘The Walrus’, where I just lie on top of my opponent and do nothing,” Musk tweeted.
So who’s likely to win?
Zuckerberg seems to be the natural choice for a winner. As well as jiu-jitsu training, he has taken on fitness challenges including the “Murph” which involves doing hundreds of squats, push-ups and pull-ups while wearing a weighted vest.
At 39, he is also 13 years younger than Musk, who is 52.
Where Musk dominates is size. He is around 6ft 1in to Zuckerberg’s 5ft 7ins and 13st 5lb to his 11st – a difference of several weight classes.
Musk has said he trained in judo, kyokushin – a style of karate – and no rules street fighting, but admitted this was “very dated”.
What’s all this about the Colosseum?
Musk set the hearts of Gladiator fans racing when he suggested the fight could happen in the home of gladiatorial contests.
“Some chance fight happens in the Colosseum,” he tweeted.
The Italian Ministry of Culture had absolutely 100% offered the 2000-year-old Roman amphitheatre, if a report by TMS Sports was to be believed.
It wasn’t, according to the Italian government, who told the outlet there had been no formal contact “even if the news appears tasty”.
The ministry reportedly added: “If Zuckerberg and Musk wanted to perform in the Colosseum they would have to make a non-violent challenge.”