Khabib Nurmagomedov Says He Never Considered Ditching Retirement
Khabib Nurmagomedov never contemplated returning to the Octagon.
Nurmagomedov is the former UFC Lightweight Champion. He was never beaten for the title, rather he retired after his bout with Justin Gaethje back in October 2020. “The Eagle” remained the 155-pound champion because UFC President Dana White was convinced that he could bring Khabib back for at least one more fight. That ended up not being the case and Nurmagomedov is indeed finished with pro MMA competition.
During the UFC Vegas 22 post-fight show, Nurmagomedov said there was never a point where he seriously considered holding off on retirement (via MMAFighting.com).
“No [I never contemplated coming back], but Dana called this official. But I retired like five, six months ago. It’s very funny. Dana told me when he posted this, he said someone write me comment about, ‘He retired not today, he retired like five months ago.’ It’s funny a little bit, but we have some conversations with Dana a couple of times. Like two days ago, we meet with him, sit, talk like two real men. We have a very good conversation with him, good dinner.
“I really appreciated him. Everything that he did, not only for me, but for all this sport. Because UFC’s a big platform. A lot of people around the world because of UFC make money and give food for his kids, for clothes. They’re doing a great job. That’s why I want to say thank you to all UFC team. [Former UFC co-owner] Lorenzo [Fertitta], Dana, everyone who signed me, [former UFC matchmaker] Joe Silva, like everybody, [UFC matchmaker] Sean Shelby. These guys are doing a great job. Because of these people, a lot of people have money, they have food for their family. Thank you guys.”
Nurmagomedov ends his pro MMA career with a perfect record of 29-0. He had two successful UFC Lightweight Title defenses.