Khabib Nurmagomedov Slams Conor McGregor and Eddie Alvarez For Not Fighting at UFC 223
Khabib Nurmagomedov is grateful that featherweight champion Max Holloway was willing to face him on six days notice at UFC 223, but that doesn’t mean he’s forgetting about a pair of lightweights who aren’t going to be standing across from him on Saturday night in Brooklyn.
Following an injury to Tony Ferguson that nearly scrapped the UFC 223 main event, the promotion began calling numerous champions, contenders and top ranked fighters in an attempt to salvage the championship bout with Nurmagomedov.
One fighter who received a call was former champion Eddie Alvarez, but the Philadelphia native said he was walking around at more than 190 pounds and there was no way he could possibly cut down to the lightweight limit in six days.
That didn’t sit too well with Nurmagomedov considering Alvarez had previously mentioned the possibility of stepping in as a replacement due to the fact that the matchup with Ferguson had fallen apart three separate times prior to UFC 223.
“I tell UFC please don’t give me regular fights. I’m tired about this. I have to fight for the title. Everybody know this. I deserve this. Please give me, make this fight, it doesn’t matter with who — alligator, heavyweights, it doesn’t matter — please give me somebody, I want to fight for the 155-pound [title]. I want to fight at 155 for the belt,” Nurmagomedov said to WFAN about his desire to fight for the belt at UFC 223.
“I know they called Eddie Alvarez, Alvarez says ‘oh I’m heavy’. Why you talk about ‘I’m going to stay ready if somebody injured, I’m going to jump’ but he talk s–t about this but when the UFC calls him, he runs.”
The other name that Nurmagomedov never even had mentioned to him as a possible opponent was reigning UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor, who hasn’t stepped foot in the Octagon since November 2016 when he won the title.
While McGregor has reportedly been targeting a return to action in September, Nurmagomedov fired back at the Irishman after he put out a tweet recently saying that he always stays ready.
Despite UFC president Dana White saying that McGregor was never an option to replace Ferguson, Nurmagomedov says that McGregor should have jumped at the chance to face him on Saturday night.
Unfortunately when the opportunity was there, Nurmagomedov says McGregor was nowhere to be found.
“Conor, first off all I tell you if you’re injured, if you’re out, please bring Conor. He posts tweet ‘I stay ready’. I tell them OK bring this guy. They call him, he has bad connection,” Nurmagomedov said with a laugh. “This guy’s a real trash talker. When you talk true and when you talk trash, it’s different. I said where’s Conor? [They said] Conor’s out, he cannot take this fight, he cannot make weight.
“He understands, he has to stop me all 25 minutes if you’re not ready, how’s he going to stop me? But at the same time he put tweet ‘I am going to stay ready’. I don’t understand these people.”