Dana White has always believed that fighters that want to retire, should retire. The fight game can be an unforgiving sport if your mind and heart are not completely into it. However, the UFC president believes that Khabib Nurmagomedov still has a lot more to offer the sport.
‘The Eagle’ beat Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 to extend his record to 29-0. After winning, Khabib would let his emotions out in the octagon and seemingly retire from the sport.
The UFC President sat down with Barstool sports to give an update on the future of the lightweight champion. Nurmagomedov had recently gone on social media to refute claims of him returning.He let the fans know that he planned to pursue his masters while also tending to and developing his farm.
When asked about Khabib’s statements, White acknowledged, “Yeah, I think that those are definitely all the things that he’s looking at and excited to do, but I think that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t want to fight either.”
Dana has often mentioned that any fighter that contemplates retirement should retire. However, there are exceptions to the rule. White continued, “I haven’t reached out to Khabib since the fight. We talked after the fight and that’s it. The only two guys that I’ve off the top of my head, I don’t want to say these are the only two guys, but I can think of right now that I’ve ever done that with Cormier and Khabib.”
Nurmagomedov had a lot to deal with heading into UFC 254. With the tragic passing away of his father, he came into the fight with a lot of emotions on his shoulder. ‘The Eagle’ however would put emotions aside and get a dominant win over Justin Gaethje. As a result, he cemented himself as one of the best to compete in this sport.
The UFC President continued, “I mean, look at Khabib’s last fight against Gaethje, with all that was going on with him, you know physically, emotionally, and mentally, look at what he did. I mean he is the best in the world right now period and I think he’s the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world.”
Dana White concluded, “I think he wants one more and I think he’s got one more in him.”
Nurmagomedov currently remains in the UFC rankings and is listed as the lightweight champion. A recent USADA visit would suggest that ‘The Eagle’ is still in the testing pool, which gives fans hope that he could return for a thirtieth fight.
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