Conor McGregor takes swipe at Khabib Nurmagomedov ahead of Dustin Poirier clash
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Conor McGregor has added to the voices questioning whether Khabib Nurmagomedov made weight for his last fight against Justin Gaethje in October. Khabib needed to strip down when stepping on the scales but then put his head in his hands after seeing the result, which many at the time took to mean he hadn’t made weight.
The contest went ahead and Khabib stopped Gaethje in the second round with a triangle choke before announcing his immediate retirement.
And McGregor has used a pre-fight interview ahead of his bout with Dustin Poirier later this month to call Khabib’s weight into question once again.
“He’s looking like a little, fat elephant at the minute,” McGregor told The Mac Life. “He’s enjoying himself.
“I don’t think he made weight the last time out here, to be honest. I was very sceptical seeing him on the scales – very, very unusual behaviour. But it is what it is.”
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McGregor wasn’t alone in believing Khabib hadn’t made weight. Former UFC fighter Olivier Aubin and current UFC fighter Tim Elliott were among those to question if Khabib had in fact made 155 lbs at the time.
But others moved quickly to insist the Russian had, with fighter Deron Winn explaining: “The UFC makes you step on the scale in a back room before you go for the official weigh in. You don’t get to step on the official scale unless you’re on weight and especially if you are the first one on the scale.”
A member of Team Khabib also moved to insist their man came in on weight back in October.
Javier Mendez told MMA Junkie: “I can tell you that yesterday after the first weight cut, it was in the morning, he was six pounds off the weight, and he was going to do two cuts – one on Thursday morning and one at night.”
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Adding: “He felt so good, and he was six pounds off, and he felt strong and said he was going to do the cut the next day. And [by then] he had four-and-a-half, maybe five pounds to go this morning.”
Nurmagomedov announced his retirement immediately after the fight with Gaethje.
The 32-year-old had previously stated he wanted to retire undefeated after 30 fights and is currently undefeated on 29 bouts.
But Nurmagomeov was fighting for the first time since the death of his father and lifelong coach Abdulmanap, whose heart condition had been exacerbated by COVID-19, and the man considered to be one of the best MMA fighters of all time said he wouldn’t want to carry on without his father in his corner.
However, UFC president Dana White is hoping he can lure the star back into the octagon when the pair meet in Abu Dhabi in the coming weeks.
McGregor takes on Poirier on January 23 and White is hoping he can arrange a second fight between Khabib and McGregor, after the Irishman was stopped in the fourth round of their 2018 bout.
And McGregor said: “How you could walk away at this stage is baffling to me but each to their own.
“There are so many amazing fights out there. Even the carry-on around the Tony (Ferguson) situation. I don’t care about anything. You are scheduled to fight a man. No matter what, the fights must take place.
“You can’t just scurry away from bouts and that’s been the hallmark of his approach. I was not surprised to see him walk away or scurry away, I should say.”
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