Javier Mendez Says Khabib Nurmagomedov Never Listened to Him

Published 05/03/2021, 12:05 PM EDT
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – SEPTEMBER 07: Khabib Nurmagomedov of Russia prepares to enter the Octagon prior to his lightweight championship bout against Dustin Poirier during UFC 242 at The Arena on September 7, 2019 in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


Javier Mendez and Khabib Nurmagomedov have always shared a great relationship. Mendez was Khabib’s trainer for over 8 years, and during that time they shared some significant experiences together.

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During a recent interview, Mendez opened up about one such incident, “Well, he’s been telling me things lately, how we don’t understand each other and it started when we first started training.

“When he first came to me I go man this guy’s unbelievable, he’s killing everybody but damn it he doesn’t listen. I go like if he could just listen he’d be so goddamn good, he could be one of the greatest, that’s what I was thinking in my mind. I’m thinking, but man, he doesn’t listen.”

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Hailing from Dagestan, Nurmagomedov wasn’t fluent in English when he found his way to Mendez’s doorstep. However, he had managed to learn the language by the time their next meeting rolled around.

Mendez talked about how Nurmagomedov told him that he used to misinterpret everything Mendez said.

“And after about the second time he came, he learned a bit of English, and he says to me, ‘coach I have to explain to you know what happened. When I first come I don’t understand you say relax, I always think to go harder so I go crazy and I try to kill people.’ That’s when I knew and we’re still doing that till now.”

Javier Mendez and Khabib Nurmagomedov still share a great relationship

While many fighters break ties with their coaches after they retire, Nurmagomedov is not one of them. Mendez is still very close to the former Lightweight Champion, and the two still respect and adore each other.

Nurmagomedov recently proved the same after he took to Instagram in a bid to share his reverence for his former coach. He wrote, “Coach, I miss you, I don’t know about you”

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DIVE DEEPER

Khabib Nurmagomedov’s Coach Teases Return of One of His Champions

11 days ago

‘The Eagle’ joined AKA back in August 2012 and subsequently went on a serial winning spree in the UFC.

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Now retired, the relationship he shares with Mendez is all he has left from his time in the promotion, in addition to the scars. What’s more, their ties offer fans some hope of the Dagestani powerhouse’s return to the octagon for one last fight with Mendez in his corner.

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Paras Pande

142 articles

Paras Pande is a UFC author at EssentiallySports who is pursuing his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication. An ardent follower of the UFC, he has been covering the sport for 2 years now. Before joining the team at EssentiallySports, Paras gained expertise as an MMA writer whilst working with Sportskeeda.

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