Khabib Nurmagomedov announced his retirement after fighting Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 and winning via Round 2 submission.
A few months before the fight happened, Khabib Nurmagomedov lost his father Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov to COVID-related complications. After his fight with Gaethje, Khabib remembered his late father and said that he had no intention of continuing to fight without him by his side.
Nurmagomedov added that he had promised his mother this would be his last fight in UFC and that he plans to keep that promise. Khabib made an already emotional moment even heavier by leaving his gloves in the middle of the octagon, a common gesture by fighters who have fought their last.
However, hardly anyone believes Khabib is done with the octagon yet. He announced his retirement with an undefeated steak of 29-0 and there are strong rumors of him coming back to fight for the 30-0.
Dana White has even said that Khabib made the call in the moment when emotions were high, and that he expected him to go back on that and fight for his 30th win. It is what his father wanted as well, White had pointed out.
Now, what everyone wants to know is who would Khabib's opponent be if he was to return. Many, including Khabib's manager Ali Abdelaziz, want it to be Georges St-Pierre.
Ali Abdelaziz: Georges St-Pierre never committed to 155 pounds
Ali Abdelaziz spoke with ESPN's Brett Okamoto and answered several questions, including what would make Khabib Nurmagomedov come back to the Octagon. Abdelaziz said it would definitely be Georges St-Pierre.
"If I'm looking as a fan, or as his manager, I think the one thing that will make Khabib crazy, make Dana (White) crazy, and make everyone crazy. I think if Georges St-Pierre picked up the phone and called Dana White and said 'I'm gonna make 155 pounds. And I love Georges St-Pierre...
St-Pierre has expressed reluctance before about cutting down to lightweight and White's aversion to catchweight bouts is well known. According to Abdelaziz, a big reason why this fight never happened is because St-Pierre did not "commit" to 155 pounds.
"I feel this fight never happened because Georges never committed to 155 pounds. And I know Dana White very well, and UFC. They're not going to go ahead and take a risk..."
Ali Abdelaziz claimed that this would be the biggest fight ever if it was to happen. It is the only scenario that would make Khabib break out of retirement. However, Khabib himself has not hinted at anything of this sort, so far, and only ever reinstated his willingness to retire time and again.Published 20 Nov 2020, 04:54 IST