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Khabib Nurmagomedov's teammate Daniel Cormier claims UFC lightweight champion is 'leaving door open' to return

UFC 242 Khabib v Poirier
UFC 242 Khabib v Poirier
Dhruv Sharma
Modified 17 Nov 2020, 13:01 IST

Former two-division UFC champion Daniel Cormier shares a close bond with Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Not only is Daniel a long-time training partner of Khabib Nurmagomedov at AKA, but the two also share a close friendship as well. 

Speaking with Ariel Helwani on ESPN, DC was asked about Khabib doing a USADA test recently, to which he responded:

"I think you leave the door open. A while back I asked Dana to take me out of the Octagon but I still do USADA. It’s kind of fun. I stay in the testing pool. It makes me feel like an athlete. It’s kind of fun. It’s cool….I’ve been tested 55 times. I’m just trying to break the record (most USADA tests), I’m trying to just go ahead than anybody else. That’s why. It’s not a big deal."

While DC played down Khabib still being in the testing pool, Khabib is still listed as the lightweight champion and pound for pound number 1 fighter in UFC rankings.

Khabib Nurmagomedov announced his retirement from MMA at UFC 254

Khabib Nurmagomedov faced off against Justin Gaethje for the lightweight crown at UFC 254 in what was perhaps the most anticipated bout of 2020.


Gaethje, for many, was expected to be Khabib’s biggest challenge to date with his crisp, clean striking and his ‘folkstyle’ wrestling.

Gaethje was also one of the few fighters who had been wrestling for almost as long as Khabib.

However, the Dagestani made short work of Justin, submitting him in the second round of the main event. He would then go on and shock the MMA community announcing that this would be his last fight and that he would be retiring from MMA.

Khabib mentioned that he had promised his mother that he would not step into the Octagon again without his father.

Khabib’s father and lifelong coach Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov lost his life earlier in the year in July due to complications related to COVID-19.

The loss left a visible, emotional impact on the otherwise stoic and collected Khabib Nurmagomedov.

The highly disciplined and no-nonsense approach to fighting that Khabib Nurmagomedov possesses has been credited to his father and the same has made him an international, cultural icon.

Fight fans across the world would surely want another glimpse of ‘The Eagle’ inside the Octagon. 

Published 17 Nov 2020, 13:01 IST
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