While it doesn’t undo the loss of a title shot, Tony Ferguson is $250,000 richer despite not having fought at UFC 209 in Las Vegas Saturday. Ferguson had been scheduled in an interim lightweight title fight against Khabib Nurmagomedov, which was to be the card’s co-main event. However, Nurmagomedov was forced to pull out of the fight at the last minute due to complications from his weight cut that landed him in hospital.
Following the event Saturday at the T-Mobile Arena, UFC President Dana White confirmed Ferguson had been paid his show money. Brett Okamoto of ESPN had previously reported on the purses awaiting Nurmagomedov and Ferguson.
Khabib Nurmagomedov's disclosed purse would have been $500k/$0, Tony Ferguson $250k/$250k.
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) March 5, 2017
Said White on Ferguson at the post-fight press conference,
He was devastated. He came over to our offices, he was as bad as anybody I’ve ever seen when a fight pulls out. I’m just giving him some time.
He then alluded to the idea that Nurmagomedov may no longer be able to make the 155lb weight class, something that would scuttle any possible match-up between the two fighters. Notably, this is the third time a fight between Ferguson and Nurmagomedov has been called off.
To be honest with you, Khabib fought in New York in November, then here in this fight, two back to back weight cuts like… I don’t know if he can make the weight, or if he needs to get a better plan or dietician. He got within six pounds and was in really rough shape. He’s going to have to take some time to recover from this weight cut. I don’t know what to do.
Following UFC 209, Ferguson would also call out lightweight champion Conor McGregor on Twitter:
— Tony Ferguson (@TonyFergusonXT) March 5, 2017