- Khabib Nurmagomdeov is one of the best mixed martial arts of all-time.
- News reports confirm that Khabib’s father passed away this week.
- It’s unclear if the UFC lightweight champion will ever compete again.
The sport of MMA is filled with talented coaches. Perhaps none have gained the same level of respect that Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, the father of UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, commands. Unfortunately, news has surfaced that Khabib’s father has passed away after a long health battle.
It’s sad news for MMA fans around the world. Abdulmanap is responsible for bringing up an entire generation of world-class fighters from Dagestan. Today, we’re going to discuss what this news means for Khabib’s future in the sport.
Let’s get into it!
Looking Back at Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov’s Accomplishments
Russia has always been known to produce talented fighters. No part of this country has generated as many talented combat sports athletes as Dagestan, though. Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov is largely responsible for that fact.
From a young age, he competed in several different combat sports. Eventually, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov earned the title of “Master of Sports in Combat Sambo.” He then moved into a coaching role and began focusing on the youth in Dagestan.
As many are aware, Dagestan has dealt with terrorism for decades. Some of the young men growing up in this area are lured into that world. Abdulmanap recognized this issue and started to encourage martial arts training to keep these men on the right path.
His success as a coach is apparent. Abdulmanap has brought up some of the best fighters on the planet including his son, Khabib Nurmagomedov, the UFC lightweight champion of the world and a man many UFC betting experts believe is the top pound-for-pound fighter in the sport. Dagestan is now known as an MMA hotbed with a huge number of talented up-and-comers residing here.
Abdulmanap has been struggling in the hospital for months. His condition became worse and he was eventually moved to a military hospital in Moscow. Unfortunately, the legendary MMA trainer recently passed away.
Will the Death of Khabib’s Father Affect His Fighting Future?
Khabib Nurmagomedov is widely considered to be the best lightweight mixed martial artist of all time. He’s now 28-0 in his career with wins over elite fighters including Conor McGregor, Dustin Poirier, and Al Iaquinta. Like all other UFC fighters based outside the US, Khabib has been sitting on the sidelines for the past few months.
It’s well-known that Khabib Nurmagomedov went back to Dagestan to be with his family during this difficult time. This proved to be a good decision, as Khabib’s father was eventually struck with the new illness now spreading around the world. It was clear that his condition was serious, yet it seemed like he was finally beginning to improve.
It’s been confirmed that Abdulmanap has passed away. Khabib’s father played a massive role in his career and many fans are now asking how this news will affect his fighting future. As of now, the UFC champion has yet to comment on the news.
Khabib has always claimed that he competes to make his father proud. Some now feel that he may now be considering retirement. Others believe he will still want to compete and defend his lightweight championship.
The latter seems more likely. Khabib is already considered one of the best MMA fighters to ever live. It will take a few more wins, however, to reach legendary status. It seems unlikely that he’d give up his titles and retire on the brink of greatness.
An opponent for Khabib has already been lined up.
Khabib vs. Gaethje is Still Likely to Take Place in 2020
There aren’t many fighters that seem capable of defeating Khabib Nurmagomedov. He’s undefeated as a professional and has only lost one round in his UFC career. His most recent performance against Dustin Poirier proved how elite he really is.
Some believe that Justin Gaethje is the only man that can defeat the champion. Gaethje has the perfect skillset to give Khabib trouble, with elite wrestling and deadly striking. It’s a little surprising to see where Justin is now in his career when considering he’d lost two-straight fights between 2017 and 2018.
On May 9th, Gaethje showed the world he is ready for the championship by defeating Tony Ferguson from pillar to post over five rounds. With the victory, he became the UFC’s interim lightweight champion. That set him up for a blockbuster fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Now that Khabib’s father has passed away, no one knows what he will do next. According to the UFC, the plan is still for Nurmagomedov to compete against Justin Gaethje sometime this year. We’ll need to wait for an official announcement.
Khabib’s father was one of the most respected men to be involved with MMA. He had an incredible career coaching some of the world’s best fighters. The effect he had on the sport will carry on for generations.
Do you think Khabib will ever fight again? When do you expect his next fight to be? Let us know in the comments section below!