Khabib Nurmagomedov’s next title defense is all set for UFC 242, with the undefeated Dagestani taking on Dustin Poirier in the main event. But two names lurking in the shadows are Tony Ferguson and Conor McGregor, who appear to be the two most likely contenders for the winner of the UFC 242 headliner. Khabib is on the record in saying that while Ferguson is deserving of a title shot for his next fight, McGregor is not. And in a recent interview with BT Sport, the champ elaborated in more detail on what will need to happen for him to face Conor McGregor again:
“Have to deserve. I have to keep winning, he have to deserve, and that’s it,” Khabib said. “It’s gonna happen. But right now, I’m not interested in this fight. For what? He tapped. If it was like we go all distance or if it was a close fight, maybe. But right now, I finished this business. If you want a new business, deserve this.”
Khabib saying that he is not interested in a Conor McGregor rematch is one thing, but with so much money to be made from the potential bout, it is very possible that Dana White may have other ideas. But in the same fashion that he competes in the Octagon, Khabib does not intend on budging, even if confronted by the power of UFC’s head honcho:
“Right now, not only Dana make decision. I’m here, too,” Khabib said with a smirk. “They have to listen to me. Because right now, I’m champion. And I know what I deserve, I know what opponents deserve. Right now, Dustin and Tony on the line. Other guys? Nobody deserve. Even if you talk about people who deserve, Conor is not on the list. He have to deserve.
“Last time he win, 2016. We talk about fight for the title, being best in the world. Please deserve. Come back and fight with someone and deserve this. No problem. But right now, a lot of tough and good opponents who have good win streak, they deserve.”
Do you believe Khabib Nurmagomedov will eventually fight Conor McGregor again, even if McGregor does not win another fight to “deserve” the rematch?