‘I Don’t Agree With That Statement’- Daniel Cormier Backs Khabib Nurmagomedov Against Dominick Cruz’s Comments

Published 10/30/2021, 12:26 PM EDT
ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – AUGUST 17: Daniel Cormier is interviewed after his TKO loss to Stipe Miocic in their heavyweight championship bout during the UFC 241 event at the Honda Center on August 17, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


The former lightweight champion, Khabib Nurmagomedov, was an undefeated UFC fighter before he retired. However, the UFC bantamweight Dominick Cruz doubts the legacy of the Russian legend. He claimed that ‘The Eagle’ didn’t challenge himself much in a previous interview.

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However, UFC veteran Daniel Cormier denied the claims and supported his friend. Cormier recently talked to the media at a UFC 267 event. And when asked about Cruz’s comments, Cormier was very cautious while responding.

He said, “Okay, so I got to be careful the way I answer this. Because if this gets skewed in any way, Dominick Cruz is smart and he is so smart that he will get you thinking that you said something wrong when you didn’t. But Dominic is a he’s different.

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“He is very different, and he tries to challenge himself in ways that most people don’t. So he thinks that the only way to have truly, truly gone through the fire is to find your equal. Unfortunately, nobody was able to equal Khabib Nurmagomedov, and they weren’t going to.

“So I don’t agree with that statement, but I do understand what Dominic is saying. Because if Dominic would have been undefeated, he would have done something different. He would have said I am gonna fight 135 or 145, sorry.

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“He would have did something different. But Khabib fought at 155. He would have had success at 170. But it was a matter of him getting out and making a promise to his mom and it means more to him. Nothing means more to this guy than family. So he told his mother something losing his dad. It was time for him to walk away and I support it.”

Why Did Khabib Nurmagomedov Left UFC

No doubt Khabib ‘The Eagle’ Nurmagomedov is one of the greatest fighters to enter the UFC octagon. The Dagestan native has an undefeated 29-0 professional MMA record. However, after his last successful title defense at UFC 254, ‘The Eagle’ hung his gloves forever.

The Russian legend credits his father, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, who also trained him since childhood for all his success in the combat world. His father cornered him throughout all his fights in the UFC.

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ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – OCTOBER 25: Khabib Nurmagomedov of Russia announces his retirement in the Octagon after his victory over Justin Gaethje in their lightweight title bout during the UFC 254 event on October 25, 2020 on UFC Fight Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Unfortunately, Abdulmanap passed away before Khabib’s title defense against Justin Gaethje in 2020. Khabib fought his battle without his father in the corner and won. However, for ‘The Eagle’ the void couldn’t be filled. Hence, he promised his mother that he wouldn’t continue fighting without his father by his side.

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‘The Eagle’ is surely a man of culture and no matter how much the promotions are ready to pay him, he is sticking to the promise he made to his mother and hasn’t returned to professional fighting.

What do you make out of Cormier’s words? What are your thoughts on Nurmagomedov’s legacy? Let us know in the comments.

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Afnan Chougle

348 articles

Afnan Chougle is a UFC author at EssentiallySports. Besides writing, this Media graduate is an integral part of the digital web stories team for combat sports. Before joining EssentiallySports, Afnan gained valuable experience as an intern at Jiostudios Production House.

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