Khabib Nurmagomedov has retired from MMA and sat down with Megan Olivi to discuss why he decided to walk away now.
When Khabib Nurmagomedov defeated Justin Gaethje inside the Octagon at UFC 254 in October he announced his retirement from MMA. During the last few months since that announcement, UFC president Dana White has been trying to get Nurmagomedov to return to fighting. The two met up several times but White was never able to convince Nurmagomedov to return. On Saturday night Nurmagomedov sat down with UFC correspondent Megan Olivi to discuss his retirement.
“You know, it’s very hard when you have power, when you’re best in the world, when you’re famous, when you have money, and say to (all these things)’ ‘No,’” Nurmagomedov said. “It’s very hard. People maybe never gonna understand me, but I really hope they’re gonna support my decision. Because everybody has their view. And my view and my relationship with my mother, I feel I have to stop. Because I feel like in every fight, in every training camp, this takes some age from my mother.
“And what I have to do? I come to this sport to show who I am, to become the best. I’m world champion. I’m pound for pound #1. I (defended) my title three times. I (won) the biggest fight in UFC history. What else? Only money. Only money fights, but I don’t need money fight.”
All Parties Now Ready To Move On
Nurmagomedov joked about White trying to get him to return, saying the decision was official back in October, not this past week when White announced it. Nurmagomedov reassured that there was never any intention to return. The decision originally came following the death of his father over the summer. Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov was his son’s training partner, and following his death, Nurmagomedov promised his mother that he would not fight again.
The UFC lightweight division can now move on without Nurmagomedov. The next title fight will be between Michael Chandler and Charles Oliveria. Nurmagomedov may not be getting back in the cage, but he promises that he will be around the sport, as a coach for his training partners and other business ventures in the future.
Will we ever see Khabib Nurmagomedov back in the UFC Octagon?