Khabib Nurmagomedov has a lot of options available for his next fight after defeating Conor McGregor at UFC 229 in October.
UFC president Dana White looked at Nurmagomedov’s fourth round submission over the Irish superstar as potentially the performance of the year in 2018 and it opened up a lot of possibilities for his next fight.
White says that a rematch between Nurmagomedov and McGregor could happen but there are still a couple other options available as well.
“I think you’d have to look at the Conor McGregor-Khabib Nurmagomedov fight,” White said when asked about the stand out performance of 2018 when speaking to ESPN. “[It] broke records, incredible fight, Khabib wins, which sets up possible fights with Tony [Ferguson] and [Dustin] Poirier and Conor [rematch]; like I said in every division I could crack out two or three different things that are fun and exciting for either the end of this year or next year.”
There’s no doubt that a Nurmagomedov-McGregor rematch would be the most lucrative fight the UFC could promote but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to happen.
Nurmagomedov hasn’t seemed all that interested in facing the former two-division champion for a second time after such a dominant performance in their first fight.
McGregor has also said as much as he wants the rematch, he’s more than willing to face another opponent that will earn him a second shot at the undefeated Russian.
For his part, White says he’s not ready to play matchmaker with either fighter right now because they’ve got bigger problems to deal with in December.
“I don’t know if the immediate rematch happens because we got to see what the Nevada State Athletic Commission hands down in December when that hearing happens,” White stated. “So I’m not even thinking about that, I’m thinking about possibilities in the future but, right now, not even worth thinking about until we find out what happens in Nevada.”
The hearing in December will decide the fate of both Nurmagomedov and McGregor for their roles in the post fight brawl that broke out at the conclusion of UFC 229 in October.
Immediately after winning the fight, Nurmagomedov leapt over the cage to go after one of McGregor’s corner men, who was reportedly shouting at him after the contest had ended. McGregor then jumped on top of the cage and ended up trading punches with several of Nurmagomedov’s teammates.
Now the two fighters have been ordered to appear before the commission on Dec. 10 for a hearing where they could face a potential suspension or financial penalties as a result of the melee that broke out at UFC 229.
Once that has been settled, White will get to work on booking Nurmagomedov’s next fight in the UFC.
Who should Khabib Nurmagomedov face in his return to action in 2019? Sound off in the comments and let us know!