Arguably the most anticipated fight between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson has a unique rivalry. Both these UFC elites have been scheduled to fight each other on more than five occasions, but this fight has not come to fruition yet due to unfortunate circumstances.
And now with Khabib’s retirement, it’s certain that this fight is never going to happen. But, the rivalry between these two still continues as both UFC lightweight legends trade verbal jabs on social media. In a recent post, Tony Ferguson called out Khabib Nurmagomedov with a few insults. Ferguson posted:
Though there is a rivalry between Ferguson and Nurmagomedov there has never been bad blood between the two. Both fighters have been very respectful towards each other and Khabib’s recent response just goes to show that. Replying to Ferguson, Khabib stated:
“You have a fight soon, your opponent is very tough and most underestimated in the lightweight division, focus on him. I wish your family best, even though you look like s**t.”
Tony Ferguson takes on Beneil Dariush in the main card of UFC 262 next.
The reason behind the decline of Tony Ferguson
Once upon a time, Tony Ferguson was the Boogeyman of the lightweight division. He seems nearly unbeatable when he was on a 13 fight win streak. And that’s why a fight between Ferguson and Nurmagomedov was so intriguing.
However, now Khabib Nurmagomedov has retired from MMA and Tony Ferguson is not the unstoppable force in the lightweight division that he used to be. After his devastating loss to Justin Gaethje and harles Oliveira, Tony Ferguson is in a tough spot in his UFC career. Though he is not likely to get cut from UFC even if he loses another fight for someone who was once on a 12 fight winning streak like Ferguson three losses might be a hard pill to swallow.
Tony Ferguson is facing the top fighters in the division. And losing to them certainly doesn’t mean that Ferguson is out of prime. But, he was dominated in his last two fights and did not win a single round against Oliveira. So it seems the years of damage Ferguson has been taking inside the octagon have finally caught up and Ferguson is not as good as he used to be.
However, Ferguson has an opportunity to change things around in his next fight against Beneil Dariush. Ferguson is training with legendary boxing coach Freddie Roach and that might improve his striking significantly. But, Dariush is coming off some huge wins in the division and will be entering the octagon with a lot of confidence in his skillsets against Ferguson.