Retired UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov has made it clear that he would remain retired from MMA. Money would not be the deciding factor in having him return to the Octagon. Instead, a possible superfight with two-division UFC champion and fellow retiree, Georges St. Pierre. Another retiree, former two-division UFC champion, and friend/training partner Daniel Cormier weighed in on Nurmagomedov’s status.
“It would have to be Georges St-Pierre,” Cormier told MMA Fighting’s Damon Martin in a recent interview. “I believe that a big fight is what he would want in order to just prove himself. Like you said, Khabib Nurmagomedov is just trying to make history and a win over Georges St-Pierre would do exactly that for him.
“When your resume becomes so big, not many things can add value to it. If he can go and [fight] GSP and beat GSP, that adds value.”
It’s not just the value, but it’s the stylistics of the matchup between the two. Everyone knows what Nurmagomedov brings to the table with his wrestling. St. Pierre’s striking has always been top notch, but his takedown defense has been given high marks by the two-time US Olympian.
“I think Georges has good takedown defense. I think Georges has good striking. The highest level striking we had seen for a long time. Georges was one of those guys that almost seemed to be ahead of the times. He almost ahead of the times. Like we were learning to strike or wrestle while Georges was able to do them both at the same time. That was very rare back then and that’s why he stood out so far above everybody else.”
Nurmagomedov defeated Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 this past October by submission in their fight that capped off a storied UFC and MMA career. As talks will progress concerning a fight against the two, speculation should begin about how much Nurmagomedov’s purse will be. Even though there is curiosity about a fight between the two legends, people will still wonder about what the purse will be, and if Khabib will take it from there. As far as continuing to fight afterwards, there are thoughts about that as well.
Nurmagomedov announced his retirement after the win over Gaethje when his father, coach, and mentor, Abdulmanap passed away from complications from COVID-19.