Watch the moving tribute that BT Sports produced to honor UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and his deceased father Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov.
Abdulmanap had been Khabib’s coach ever since he was a child. Though Khabib also trains with the Javier Mendez led American Kickboxing Academy, his father was always his main trainer and guiding influence.
Abdulmanap was hospitalized with pneumonia-like symptoms in April in Dagestan. As his condition worsened, he was flown to a military hospital in Moscow, where he tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus that has swept across the globe.
Khabib’s father suffered a heart attack brought on by the disease in May and underwent emergency bypass surgery. He was twice placed into a medically induced coma, according to Russian news outlet RT.
Abdulmanap reportedly succumbed to brain injuries caused by a stroke, which stemmed from complications from fighting the disease.
The senior Nurmagomedov was a decorated combat Sambo veteran, who coached Khabib throughout his entire mixed martial arts career. He also coached several other athletes.
Khabib fights for the first time since his father’s passing when he faces Justin Gaethje in the UFC 254 main event on Saturday on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.
UFC 254: Khabib vs. Gaethje is the final event of the UFC’s five-show stint on its second go around on Fight Island, it’s international safe haven during the global coronavirus pandemic.
NOTE: UFC 254 has a special Main Card start time of 2 pm ET / 11 am PT with the Prelims beginning at 10:30 am ET / 7:30 am PT.
(Video courtesy of UFC)
Trending Video > UFC Fight Island 6: Brian Ortega vs Korean Zombie Recap
(Subscribe to MMAWeekly.com on YouTube)