Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Tony Ferguson: Ramadan Looks Likely to Scupper Summer Plans for Fight


Having endured the bitter disappointment of the cancelled UFC lightweight interim championship fight between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson at UFC 209, fans hoping for a rescheduled date in the summer look set to be disappointed once again.

Nurmagomedov was hospitalized following complications with weight-cutting prior to the UFC 209 co-headline bout, in yet another instance where the unbeaten title-contender has failed to make it into the octagon due to health issues. Should any potential rebooking of the fight be feasible in the future, it will be the fourth attempt, following three unsuccessful bids to get the pair into the octagon over the past couple of years.

The Dagestani fighter’s coach and father, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, recently commented on proceedings in rescheduling the fight. Addressing questions from Russian media, Nurmagomedo Sr. dampened hopes that the bout could be rescheduled for this summer (via TASS):

“Khabib will undergo a medical examination in Germany, after which we will be able to understand the dates for the next fight,” said nurmagomedov sr.

“Our teams will continue the negotiations. A possible date is September. There is no agreement, but I do know that it won’t happen before Ramadan,” he added.

Khabib Nurmagomedov is a devout Muslim, and as such, will take a break from fighting activities during Islam’s Holy Month.

Ramadan begins on Friday, May 26 this year and ends on Saturday, June 24 (although these dates may vary according to geographical location). During Ramadan, one facet of the holiday involves believers adhering weeks of intensive fasting throughout the period.

Nurmagomedov told RT Sport in November the importance of his faith:

“For me it is everything,” he told RT Sport in November.

“This is not about being a professional athlete, so I have to do this or I have to do that. That is because I am Muslim. That’s not about sport.