By many parameters, the best MMA (mixed martial arts) fighter of today, the undefeated ruler of the light UFC category, Khabib Nurmagomedov, opened to the public today after a long absence due to a family tragedy. The Dagestani fighter left a few comments on social networks in recent weeks, but now he has finally spoken after he was left without the mainstay of his life, a man who created a machine for breaking opponents from a small talented boy, father Abdulmanap (57), who last month lost the fight against heart problems and the coronavirus.
A blow that no opponent has ever given him. Knockout. And so it is when life strikes. And like all great fighters, after calming down and gathering his thoughts, he decided to "fight back" and return to the octagon. "Not only did my father die of the crown, but there were also more people around us.
It's a disease, and I understand it. I accepted the reality, even though it's very difficult," said the otherwise extremely unemotional Nurmagomedov, "We were very close, like friends. He was my friend and father and coach.
To sit here with a petrified face and claim to be over, it would be a lie. Who knows, maybe these feelings will raise me to a higher level, things like this will either break or strengthen you. " While he was surviving a pandemic in his native Dagestan, the UFC took off, so in the meantime, he got a new challenger for the lightweight throne.
This is his former training partner Justin Gaethje after he unexpectedly beat the title of interim champion of the favored Tony Ferguson. A fighter who, due to the pandemic, failed to challenge Khabib in the already scheduled, then canceled fight for April this year at UFC 249.
The decision on the ruler of one of the most demanding weight categories is scheduled for October 24 in Abu Dhabi.
Gaethje vs Khabib
"Right now I'm rating my form with three, but I have plenty of time to get to five.
Gaethje is a dangerous opponent and I hope he wasn't convinced that a few years ago I said his match with Alvarez looked like an alcoholic fight. It was such a wild fight, but Justin has refined his style, he is much more experienced now, he knows the goal and the means.
" the Russian contestant is always rested, "Many ask me to compare him to Conor McGregor, and the only thing I can say is that he is no better than the Irishman in the stand." It was the famous showdown with Conor McGregor that catapulted Khabib Nurmagomedov among sports stars and made him famous, influential, and, above all, rich.
That is why stories about a possible rematch are always present. "I don't think there will be anything from that fight in the near future. But it can be fixed. If I beat Justin and he defeats Dustin Poirier ... But if that doesn't happen, I'll wait for Georges Saint-Pierre.
He and I have over 25 years of invincibility, that would be a terrible match! I know my price anyway. I am already 31 years old, I will soon be 32 and my pension is approaching. I know that I will not be in the octagon for a long time and that time should be used in the best possible way.