Russian fighter Khabib Nurmagomedov is fed up with the way the UFC has treated him, and he’s ready to show that promotional superstar Conor McGregor isn’t the only one that can throw his weight around.
Nurmagomedov, the UFC’s No. 1 ranked lightweight contender, feels mistreated when it comes to the current title situation.
After having signed not one, but two separate bout agreements to challenge Eddie Alvarez for the belt, Nurmagomedov was disregarded in favor of a fight between Alvarez and McGregor, ignoring the bout agreements issued to the undefeated Russian. McGregor will hang on to his UFC featherweight title, while getting a shot at Alvarez’s belt in the UFC 205 main event on Nov. 12 in New York.
Needless to say, that did not sit well with Nurmagomedov.
“I understand money fight, but first of all this is sport and you have to fight somebody who is number-one ranked,” he said during an interview on The Luke Thomas Show on Sirius XM.
After explaining that, if it were him with the title in hand, he would have made McGregor earn his shot at the belt by forcing him to fight other ranked lightweights, Nurmagomedov said that he felt like UFC president Dana White used him to get the Alvarez vs. McGregor bout signed.
“Dana a little bit play games and use my name. I never forget this,” said Nurmagomedov, who faces No. 6 ranked Michael Johnson at UFC 205.
If he defeats Johnson, Nurmagomedov had better get the next title shot. If not, he said that he would never fight for the UFC again and would use his power in his homeland to block the promotion from ever promoting events there.
“After this fight, I have to fight for the title. If I don’t fight after this fight for the title, I never fight in UFC and UFC never, ever go to Russia,” said Nurmagomedov.
“After this fight, if I win, I deserve my title shot. And, if I don’t fight after this fight for the title, I never fight in the UFC no more because I deserve this. I am undefeated. I never lose.”
McGregor admittedly has a lot of clout in the UFC and gets a lengthy rope when he wants things to go his way. Nurmagomedov does not command the same star power as McGregor, but in his mind, he has the power to impede the UFC’s plans for Russia.
“If I don’t fight, I am gonna show how I have power in Russia. I don’t fight in UFC never and UFC never go to Russia,” he continued. “Because UFC think Conor have power? I have power, too. I have power, too. This is not all about pay-per-view. I have power, too. I am gonna show this power.”