Khabib Nurmagomedov will only fight “scumbag” McGregor in the streets
Don’t hold your breath for Khabib Nurmagomedov vs Conor McGregor 2, unless they run into each other on the streets.
The two arch rivals met at UFC 229, which became the highest grossing pay-per-view event in MMA history. This was not without controversy and violence, however, which spurred the already intense rivalry. In the end, Nurmagomedov won via fourth round submission, though the action didn’t end there. Both fighters were suspended following post-match violence in what was one of the most controversial moments of 2018.
McGregor returned to action at UFC 246 in January of this year, finishing Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone in just 40 seconds. Following the victory, UFC president Dana White was adamant about McGregor challenging for the lightweight title and potentially facing Nurmagomedov again. However, if you ask Nurmagomedov’s manager Ali Abdelaziz, that is decidedly not the case.
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“The only chance this fight could happen is in the street,” Abdelaziz told ESPN of a potential rematch between McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov. “[McGregor would] have to do something spectacular. He’s shit, you understand?
“Conor McGregor is one of the biggest stars because he’s one of the biggest scumbags.”
The animosity clearly goes beyond the two fighters. Their team mates, management and associates seem to have bad blood towards each other. On Some levels there’s an almost ideological difference between the two sides. Abdelaziz acknowledged that there’s clear ill will directed towards McGregor.
“Let’s be real,” Abdelaziz said. “We don’t like this guy. We’re never gonna like him. Probably every time we see him, there’s gonna be problems. He said things about family, things about religion, things about race. He crossed the line. … You can’t cross the line with [Nurmagomedov].”
Still undefeated and having defended his title twice, Nurmagomedov faces his third and perhaps toughest test to date up next. On April 18th he faces old foe Tony Feguson in a bout that has been cancelled four times throughout the years. Hopefully fifth time is the charm as unlucky and unfortunate circumstances have led to the fight not materialising before.
As White and Abdelaziz have completely different opinions on a Nurmagomedov-McGregor rematch, it remains to be seen if and when we see the two stars collide.