When Khabib Nurmagomedov was set to take on Conor McGregor at UFC 229, it was set to be the biggest payday of his career. Ultimately, he received a $2 million fight purse to fight McGregor where he defeated the Irishman by submission in the fourth round. That win made Nurmagomedov a superstar and now fighters all want to fight him.
However, one fight that would make sense is Tony Ferguson. The UFC has booked that fight four times in which it has never come to fruition for different reasons. Now, after Ferguson’s win at UFC 229, it appeared that would be the fight to make for Nurmagomedov. It appears fans were wrong, as manager Ali Abdelaziz would rather see Nurmagomedov fight in ‘big money fights.’
“The biggest money fight he can make [is what we’re looking for],” Abdelaziz told MMAFighting. “At the end of the day, Khabib doesn’t need to fight anybody else for his legacy. He’s done what he’s done. He’s 27-0, he’s 12-0 in the UFC, he’s never been dropped, he’s never been caught, he’s never been knocked down. Let’s talk about a GOAT. No PEDs. We talk about the greatest of all-time, I think that he should be on top of the list, because he never lost to anybody. He’s never lost, he’s never been dropped, he’s never been stitched, nothing.
“So [we want] the biggest money fight he can make. Boxing, MMA, whatever. I love Tony Ferguson — he’s not that, I can tell you that. One-hundred percent, Tony Ferguson is not the next fight, because Tony Ferguson — I need somebody who can sell pay-per-views. At the end of the day, it will be the exact same situation. Khabib was supposed to fight Eddie Alvarez, remember that? When he got taken out [in place of McGregor], we understood it because Conor’s going to bring pay-per-views. We need people who can help us sell pay-per-views, and that’s it.”
In the end, Nurmagomedov has to wait to see what his punishment is from Nevada before any fight can get booked. If he wants money fights, a rematch against McGregor may very well happen in 2019, or possibly the boxing match against Floyd Mayweather that has been rumored for months.