Khabib Nurmagomedov definitely plans on defending his UFC lightweight title in 2018 and the most likely opponent remains former champion Conor McGregor.
Over the weekend, Nurmagomedov did a live chat with fans on Instagram where he revealed the current plans in the works for a showdown with McGregor later this year.
Previously, Nurmagomedov had mentioned the possibility of returning to action as early as September or October but right now McGregor is still in the crosshairs of a legal battle after going on a tirade in Brooklyn earlier this year that ended with his arrest on assault and criminal mischief charges.
Assuming McGregor avoids any serious consequences as a result of a plea deal with prosecutors, then he will likely work towards booking his next fight sooner rather than later and it appears the UFC has that same idea in mind.
“UFC working on fight — me versus Conor [McGregor]” ~ Khabib Nurmagomedov
“Very soon I’m going to come to USA, California and begin my training camp. When the UFC gives me fight, I’m going to come to California and stay at [American Kickboxing Academy] and my family for nine weeks before the fight and I’m going to defend my title,” Nurmagomedov said during the live chat.
“Opponents, I don’t know to be honest. UFC working on fight — me versus Conor [McGregor]. If they give Conor, I’m going to fight. If they give different opponent — GSP or winner of [Eddie] Alvarez-[Dustin] Poirier, it doesn’t matter. Let’s go.”
It’s no secret that the UFC would love to book Nurmagomedov against McGregor in what would undoubtedly become the biggest fight of the year for the promotion.
The fact that the UFC is actively engaging in making the fight is definitely good news as McGregor hasn’t fought inside the Octagon since November 2016.
While nothing is finalized yet, Nurmagomedov sounds confident that he’ll be ending his sabbatical soon to return to the United States to begin his training camp for the first defense of his UFC lightweight championship.
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