Coming days after UFC president Dana White’s assertions that Khabib Nurmagomedov could be tempted back out of retirement, the current lightweight champion has reiterated his decision to stop fighting.
With Nurmagomedov still recognised by the promotion as their 155 lbs champion, White has held onto the idea of Nurmagomedov chasing the 30th professional win of his career and proclaimed that a recent meeting between the two would see the Dagestani fighter return if someone at UFC 257 could “do something special”.
In an interview with Russian outlet Sport24 however, ‘The Eagle’ strongly hinted that he is finished with competing – no matter the results of Saturday’s PPV event.
“There must be some motivation, some hunger,” Nurmagomedov per English subtitles. “If you’re not hungry, you know, I’ve been in sports for so many years. I’ve been doing it all my life. I have achieved almost everything in this sport, and there isn’t someone who I would like to fight now.
“I know that there are many fighters who would like to earn money, who strive for something. What should I do? A lot of people don’t want to understand my side. I don’t see that yet.”
“If we talk about all my business projects, I have so much to do that is planned,” Nurmagomedov continued. “And fights are not in these plans.
“I train for myself. The biggest thing that gives me pleasure is training. I enjoy when I wrestle, run, spar, work on pads, when I work on the punch bags. This is what I have been doing all my life, and I will continue to train constantly, as well. But if we talk about the fights, they are not a part of my plans.”