Khabib Nurmagomedov Pays Emotional Tribute To Father While Retiring From UFC
UFC champion Khabib Nurmagomedov has retired from the sport of mixed martial arts, during an emotional post-match interview where he paid tribute to his late-dad.
The MMA fighter made a lengthy and emotional announcement after beating Justin Gaethje in brilliant fashion at UFC 254, which saw him retain an unbeaten career record in the cage-fighting sport.
With a clean 29-0 win record (13-0 as the lightweight champ), 32-year-old Khabib Nurmagomedov spoke about his recently deceased father, Abdulmanap, who he lost at the age of 57 due to health complications as a result of coronavirus.
‘UFC undisputed, undefeated lightweight champion, 13-0, 13 in UFC, 29 in all pro MMA career. I think I deserve it,’ he said, on his decision to retire from the sport.
The fighter described how he was unwilling and unable to continue without his father by his side, after giving his mum his word that this was the last time he’d step into the ring.
‘I promised my mother this is going to be my last fight,’ revealed a visibly exhausted and highly emotional Khabib. ‘I only want one thing from the UFC, I want to be number one pound-for-pound fighter in the world.’
‘One more thing, I want to say thank you Lorenzo Fertitta, thank you Dana, Hunter, all guys. Thank you so much, and of course I don’t forget about Joe Silva who signed me here in UFC. Joe Silva, thank you. All this UFC team, everybody around the world, this whole pandemic stuff, they are doing great show.’
Hid dad was rushed to hospital in May, when COVID-19 symptoms worsened due to an existing heart condition.
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