Ali Abdelaziz, the manager of the UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, stated that his client intends to fight Tony Ferguson. According to Abdelaziz, the fight would happen next spring, and Khabib would like to be it in March or April.
“Bring your ass March or April,” Abdelaziz said. “Get the ass whippin’ and retire. That’s it — finished.”
Ferguson, who is 25-3 in MMA, fought the last time this June at UFC 238 against Donald Cerrone in a memorable match, which ended with a doctor’s stoppage. Throughout the previous three years, he had three fights, and won them all. Ferguson also didn’t lose for 12 straight matches and is unbeaten since 2012.
This is the third time for these two guys to have an arranged fight. On the previous two occasions, the contest was always canceled for some pretty much strange reason. At first, it was Khabib who got ill while cutting weight in 2017. A year later, Ferguson tripped on cable at one media session and injured his knee ligament just one week before the event. At the time, there were various rumors about the real reasons for the cancellations.
But it seems now that both guys are determined to meet and settle the things. According to the latest rankings in the lightweight division, Nurmagomedov is the No.1 while Ferguson sits right behind him at No.2.
The last fight Khabib had happened this September at the UFC 242, when he defeated Dustin Poirier.
Abdelaziz ruled out the possibility of Conor McGregor being the first in line opponent for Khabib after the bout with Ferguson. He stated that the Notorious should fight first with Justin Gaethje, who is also his client. Only then, if he wins it, he could face Nurmagomedov once again. However, he truly doubts that such a thing is possible, especially with the way McGregor fights.
“You can’t wrestle for (expletive),” Abdelaziz said. “You don’t have heart. You don’t have charisma. Don’t get it twisted. (If) I don’t hate you, it doesn’t mean I don’t respect you, 100 percent.”
He continued to rip the Irishman by saying that he isn’t worthy of a fight with Khabib or even Gaethje, but that the UFC organization wants to use his popularity and earn some money while they can. Overall, he is pretty much done as a fighter.
“Guys, Conor McGregor is done. The UFC is trying to figure out how they can cash out of him because he’s still one of the biggest stars in the sport. We can’t deny him. But the man has no soul, he has no heart, and he’s got no cojones.”
— MMA Junkie (@MMAjunkie) October 9, 2019
It is obvious that Abdelaziz wants to settle a fight between Gaethje and McGregor. Following that, the winner of this event would fight the winner of the Khabib vs. Ferguson match.
“I’m gonna be generous,” Abdelaziz said. “If Tony is next [for Nurmagomedov], Justin Gaethje should fight for the title and wait or fight the Irishman [McGregor].”
But all of Abdelaziz’s plans have to be backed by the UFC president, Dana White, who isn’t going to be thrilled after all the talks that his organization protects McGregor. For now, the Notorious isn’t speaking too much about his next opponent. From time to time he calls out Khabib, or responds to some of the other fighters who mention him. However, he isn’t willing to respond clearly to any of the fights offers he receives.
We’ll see if he stays quiet after Abdelaziz’s trash talk.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.