Don’t maintain your breath ready for Khabib Nurmagomedov to return.
A comeback to the octagon doesn’t appear too promising for the unbeaten UFC light-weight champion, who abruptly retired from the game again in October after efficiently defending his title in opposition to Justin Gaethje at UFC 256. The retirement was a shock to many, as Nurmagomedov is a large star in fight sports activities and regarded to be in his prime – being 32 years outdated and undefeated.
Nurmagomedov retired as a result of he promised his mom he would cease competing following the dying of his father Abdulmanap, who was additionally his coach, as a consequence of COVID-19 problems in summer season of 2020.
Since hanging up the gloves, many, together with UFC president Dana White, have needed Nurmagomedov to return and stroll again his retirement.
Nurmagomedov’s American Kickboxing Academy coach, Javier Mendez, believes no amount of cash in and of itself might convey again Nurmagomedov, however perhaps there’s a slight probability the proper battle would.
“It’s legacy, father’s plan legacy and it’s nothing aside from that,” Mendez advised MMA Junkie. “It’s not about cash, so no. He has sufficient cash. He doesn’t ever have to fret about supporting his household. He’s positive.”
Mendez believes a battle with former UFC middleweight and welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre might do the trick, however even then, it won’t be sufficient to entice Nurmagomedov again.
Previous to the passing of Nurmagomedov’s father, the plan was to battle once more after defending the title in opposition to Gaethje. Khabib needed to battle and beat St-Pierre, after which retire with a 30-0 file. Abdulmanap’s dying modified plans. Nevertheless, Mendez feels an opportunity might exist if the chance introduced itself.
“Something is feasible, however it needs to be for the proper battle,” Mendez defined. “I did an interview they usually indicated whereas I used to be doing the interview that GSP and him had been preventing. And I used to be like, ‘What? Okay.’
“And like I’ve mentioned, there’s a good risk that he would discuss to his mother and his mother might get the approval, however till then I don’t assume that was even on the desk regardless that I assume Kenny Florian and Jon Anik mentioned (he would battle). However that’s all I do know, however I haven’t heard the rest, they mentioned that.”
On the Anik and Florian podcast, Kenny Florian mentioned St-Pierre is making ready to battle Nurmagomedov. No additional data was revealed, however no additional studies have come out on the matter.
Final month, White shut down talk of a possible Nurmagomedov vs. St-Pierre bout, saying that battle is “over” and neither get together is thinking about making it occur.
Though UFC brass say Nurmagomedov just isn’t thinking about preventing St-Pierre and vice versa, Mendez believes that’s the one battle that might add to Nurmagomedov’s legacy, as no different win over a light-weight fighter will do.
“To me, it must be a GSP determine,” Mendez mentioned. “I don’t assume one other win goes so as to add something. Had Conor (McGregor) gained his final battle and Dana was capable of entice them, and Conor regarded nice in doing it, then perhaps, perhaps we’d’ve noticed one thing.
“However you heard it from Dana. He’s throwing his hat in. What does that imply? I don’t know. Perhaps behind closed doorways it doesn’t imply nothing, however on the general public it implies that it’s just about put to relaxation.”
Competing in opposition to the remainder of the UFC lightweights doesn’t appear to curiosity Nurmagomedov, however neither does competitors a weight class above. Prior to now, champions have modified division in pursuit of gold in a unique weight class so as to add to their careers.
Mendez doesn’t factor a transfer as much as 170 kilos would curiosity Nurmagomedov.
“He’s by no means mentioned going as much as one other weight, he by no means mentioned any want,” Mendez mentioned. “He at all times mentioned, ‘I’m a light-weight, coach, and I’ll keep at light-weight.’
“Based mostly on all of the years I’ve talked to him, the welterweight championship could be out of the query. The one factor that I might consider, could be if GSP and him had been ever to return to fruition perhaps at 165 kilos for a brand new title. And I believe it’s wanted as a result of between 155 and the welterweight division there’s a reasonably large hole.”