Khabib Nurmagomedov had some harsh words for former UFC interim Lightweight champion Tony Ferguson
Khabib was speaking to ACA fighter Magomed Ismailov (h/t Bloody Elbow) and explained why Ferguson was not an elite fighter.
Khabib and Ferguson were to meet at UFC 249. However, the fight was changed and Justin Gaethje stepped in.
Gaethje destroyed Ferguson and went on to challenge Khabib. El Cucuy, for his part, hasn’t been the same and Khabib brought out his thoughts on Ferguson:
“I swear that I never considered him [Ferguson] as an elite lightweight.”
Khabib went on to say that Ferguson was “very good” but he never counted him so. The Russian then explained why it was tough for Ferguson to be an elite Lightweight:
“It’s impossible to be an elite at 37 years (of age). It’s never been before and Khabib cannot do this. At 37 years in the lightweight division, no way, but heavyweights can.
“It’s my opinion and you cannot change it. Secondly, since 2016 he fought Kevin Lee, Edson Barboza, Anthony Pettis, and Donald Cerrone and these four fighters have 20 losses for these four years.”
Younger fighters getting the better of Tony Ferguson
The last fight for Ferguson was against Charles Oliveira. However, El Cucuy was comprehensively beaten in that one too and Khabib brought up how younger fighters were getting the better of Ferguson:
“He faced young and top fighters, I mean Charles Oliveira and Justin Gaethje. They outclassed him, you saw this. Both fighters just dominated Tony.”
Khabib then added that he was dreaming about this fight but destiny didn’t seem to have the same plans:
“I was just dreaming about this fight. But it wasn’t destined, we had injuries in a row.”
Khabib is now retired from MMA and seems set to lose his title. Dana White confirmed that an unofficial Lightweight tournament is on but he still hopes that Khabib will be back.
It will be interesting to see what is next for the UFC great. He is 29-0 and Georges St-Pierre could be the 30th fight that could see him come out of retirement.
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