Khabib Nurmagomedov: Fight Against Conor McGregor Would Be ‘Biggest Matchup in UFC History’
Khabib Nurmagomedov is still awaiting word on his next fight.
The reigning UFC lightweight champion has stated publicly several times that he wanted to return to action by September or October but there’s still no exact word on an opponent.
The most logical fight — and the one UFC president Dana White has said he hopes to make — is the matchup between Nurmagomedov and former two-division champion Conor McGregor.
Right now, however, McGregor remains in limbo until after his July 26 hearing for the bus assault he initiated back at UFC 223 where he injured several fighters, at least one UFC employee and did thousands of dollars of damage to a bus transporting athletes back to their hotel.
In theory if McGregor reaches a plea agreement with prosecutors for that July 26 hearing, he could be free and clear to fight immediately afterwards. A showdown with Nurmagomedov would then become the top fight for McGregor to take in his return to action.
“If they want to make make money, let’s go. Khabib vs. Conor, country vs. country, fans vs. fans. It’s gonna be very big, one of the biggest,” Nurmagomedov told ‘Anatomy of the Fighter’ when speaking about McGregor. “I think biggest matchup in UFC history, me vs. Conor. Without bus, without other things, we just have to fight but I don’t think the UFC can make the decision about this fight.
“I think about this fight, I think only Conor can make this decision. If he wants to lose and make money, he has to say ‘yes I’m going sign this contract and come back’ because people forget about when he fought last time.”
McGregor hasn’t competed in the UFC since November 2016 when he took the lightweight championship from Eddie Alvarez by second round TKO.
Since that time, McGregor has been focused on the birth of his first child, a multi-million dollar fight against Floyd Mayweather and then this legal entanglement that likely pushed back his next UFC engagement by several months.
Obviously, Nurmagomedov is still on board for the fight but time is ticking to get something booked and McGregor’s status won’t be cleared until at least after July 26.