The former UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov is most likely to stay retired. After Islam Makhachev became the lightweight champion at UFC 280, ‘The Eagle’ will focus more on coaching his protégé, Makhachev.
Since announcing retirement after beating Justin Gaethje in 2020, Nurmagomedov has turned into a professional coach and also started a fighting promotion called Eagle FC. However, there have been rumors of Khabib coming back to the UFC, but now it seems he might never compete actively in the sport.
In a recent interview, Coach Javier Mendez confirmed this saying Nurmagomedov will never fight again. Talking about Khabib’s retirement Mendez said:
“Khabib is officially retired. He’ll never come back, actually never say never, but the likelihood of him coming back is very hopeless.”
Following the footsteps of his late father, Nurmagomedov has settled as a coach and now helps his cousins and other fighters to train for their fights. Nowadays, Nurmagomedov teaches wrestling at AKA in San Jose, California.
Nurmagomedov will continue to make great fighters like Makhachev and as it is evident, Dagestani wrestling has become a big part of MMA. Many fighters are going to train with Nurmagomedov nowadays to improve their ground game.
Khabib Nurmagomedov has passed the torch to Islam Makhachev
Khabib Nurmagomedov is regarded as one of the greatest fighters of all time in the UFC. With an unblemished record of 29-0, Nurmagomedov was so dominant, that he never lost a round in his professional career.
After beating Gaethje at UFC 254, Nurmagomedov laid down the belt and announced his retirement from the sport. Now after nearly two years after Nurmagomedov’s retirement, his protégé Makhachev has finally fulfilled his destiny and won the lightweight belt after dominantly beating Charles Oliveira at UFC 280.
In the same interview Coach, Mendez said Khabib’s era has ended and it is now Makhachev’s time. Quoting Nurmagomedov, Mendez said: “Like Khabib says – “hey guys Khabib’s time is over, now is Islam Makhachev’s time.”
Watch the full interview below:
Apart from Makhachev, ‘The Eagle’ corners his cousins Abubakar Nurmagomedov and Umar Nurmagomedov in the UFC. Khabib also cornered Usman Nurmagomedov for his Bellator debut.