Khabib Nurmagomedov may very well return to the Octagon to pursue a 30-0 record, but he doesn’t appear to be interested in a rematch with either Conor McGregor or Dustin Poirier.
Nurmagomedov held a press conference in Russia on Wednesday to announce the launch of his own MMA promotion, Eagle Fighting Championships. During that session, he addressed the possibility of a UFC return and what will happen when he meets with Dana White. The UFC president has said he expects the lightweight champion to return for one more fight and plans to meet with Nurmagomedov in Abu Dhabi in the coming weeks. Nurmagomedov announced his retirement in the cage following a victory over Justin Gaethje in the UFC 254 headliner on Oct. 24.
Nurmagomedov, who already owns submission wins over McGregor and Poirier, doesn’t believe he has much incentive to face either man again. McGregor and Poirier will meet in a rematch at UFC 257 on Jan. 23.
“First, he will probably offer money,” Nurmagomedov said of White (translation via MMA journalist Igor Lazorin). “What for? I choked both [McGregor and Poirier]. Why should I do this?”
Nurmagomedov’s matchup with McGregor at UFC 229 is believed to be the promotion’s highest selling pay-per-view of all time with more than 2 million buys. However, financial rewards alone are not enough to motivate “The Eagle.”
“Yes, only money. There is no sports interest there,” Nurmagomedov said. “I choked both of them, both were champions, both surrendered to me. As our proverb says: a horse doesn’t run until the donkey wins. Donkeys don`t even take part in competitions where horses run. I have no interest in fighting against these opponents.
“Imagine UFC offered you $100 million. This is already a problem. But there is no sports interest there.”
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