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Zuckerberg: Elon isn’t serious about cage match

This combo of images shows Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, left, and Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk. | Source: AP

For the second weekend in a row, tech billionaires Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk traded jabs online about a proposed "cage match" that seemed increasingly unlikely to ever happen.

On Sunday, Zuckerberg accused Musk of continually avoiding an in-person contest, an idea that has drawn mounting interest since the two social media moguls agreed to it several months ago.

Musk posted repeatedly this week about the fight's ancient Roman theme, where it would be streamed and the charity that would benefit. But the leader of X, the social network formerly known as Twitter, has not agreed to a date, wrote the Meta boss, frustrating him to the point of calling off the match.

"I think we can all agree Elon isn't serious and it's time to move on," wrote Zuckerberg in a post Sunday morning on Threads. "Elon won't confirm a date, then says he needs surgery, and now asks to do a practice round in my backyard instead.

"If Elon ever gets serious about a real date and official event, he knows how to reach me," he added. "Otherwise, time to move on. I'm going to focus on competing with people who take the sport seriously."

On X, the Musk-owned social network formerly known as Twitter, journalist and author Walter Isaacson shared an image from a 4:45 a.m. text he said had been sent by Musk to Zuckerberg offering to "do a practice round at your house next week."

The idea for a contest between the two social media moguls was conceived back in June, when Musk fired off a dig about Threads, Meta's new platform that was then about to be launched to compete with Twitter. Someone pointed out that Zuckerberg had actually trained in mixed martial arts. Musk, undaunted, fired back that he'd be "up for a cage match." In an Instagram story post, Zuckerberg replied: "send me location."

A week ago, Musk claimed the promised in-person face-off with Zuckerberg would be streamed live. He said the proceeds would benefit a charity for veterans.

Zuckerberg responded via Threads, saying, "Shouldn't we use a more reliable platform that can actually raise money for charity?"

George Kelly can be reached at gkelly@sfstandard.com