Khabib Nurmagomedov says why he was the number one pound-for-pound fighter back in the days, and not Jon Jones


Khabib Nurmagomedov was the number one p4p fighter in the UFC for quite a while before announcing his retirement

Khabib Nurmagomedov was on an absolute tear when he announced his retirement on the 24th of October in 2020. The Russian UFC legend was 29-0 in his MMA career when he made that announcement.

It has been almost 9 months since he hung up his gloves, and Khabib now is retired for good. The Dagestani man has taken up coaching his fellow Dagestani brothers, and is also looking after his MMA promotion – Eagle Fighting Championships.

Khabib Nurmagomedov training
Khabib Nurmagomedov with his coach Javier Mendez

Brett Okamoto of ESPN caught up with Khabib wherein they discussed a myriad of topics.

‘The Eagle’ explained why he was the pound-for-pound number during his heydays, and not someone like Jon Jones and Kamaru Usman. Khabib particularly was critical of Jones’ recent track record which included a boatload of unanimous decision victories.

Khabib was quoted as saying:

“For me it’s like, 30-0, 29-0, or 15-0, it’s nothing. I fight and I showed the world,” Nurmagomedov said. “And from nowhere, I came here and took over everything. At that moment, I was the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter. This, nobody can say nothing. It was not Kamaru Usman, it was not Jon Jones, who fights very close fights with all these light heavyweights like Ovince Saint Preux, like Thiago (Santos), Anthony Smith, Dominick Reyes. These guys, [Jones] showed versus them very bad performances, and everything that happened with doping. But what about me? I was mauling everybody.” [via]

Khabib Nurmagomedov completely unimpressed with Conor McGregor’s performance at UFC 264

Khabib was critical of the way McGregor handled himself prior to his fight against Dustin Poirier at UFC 264. ‘The Eagle’ claimed that even the Irishman’s trash-talking was so forced and fake.

In the same interview with Okamoto, Khabib gave his honest opinion about the fight, especially about his nemesis, McGregor:

“It sounds like the same thing Dustin said, ‘It’s just noise.’ He is not him, you know? I think he tried to…It was fake Conor, in my opinion, because a couple of months ago (at UFC 257), we saw how he was nice…It looks fake, you know? That’s why such trash-talks don’t work on Dustin Poirier, I think. He lost so much energy. He lost so much energy because he tried to get under his skin. ‘Don’t focus on your opponent. Why do you focus on him? Just focus on yourself.”

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