News erupted on Tuesday when UFC President Dana White announced that Tony Ferguson and Kevin Lee will be fighting for the UFC interim lightweight title at UFC 216.
Many were wondering what happened to the #1 UFC ranked lightweight contender Khabib Nurmagomedov. White addressed the question regarding “The Eagle” when he revealed the fight between Ferguson and Lee and said that Nurmagomedov simply isn’t ready to return to competition yet.
Nurmagomedov’s father who is also his coach commented on the Ferguson vs Lee interim title fight and mentioned that the UFC did not want to wait less than one month after the UFC 216 date for Khabib to return in November.
Nurmagomedov’s manager Ali Abdelaziz took to Twitter on Wednesday, replying to Ariel Helwani’s tweet about the UFC was looking to arrange a fight between “The Eagle” and Edson Barboza.
Helwani: As for what this means for Nurmagomedov, there was talk of him vs Barboza in Dec. but Barboza is still not cleared from shoulder surgery.
As for what this means for Nurmagomedov, there was talk of him vs Barboza in Dec. but Barboza is still not cleared from shoulder surgery.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) August 16, 2017
Abdelaziz: Khabib is only fighting for title or fighting Conor everyone need to stop assuming this is the only way he’s fighting.
Khabib is only fighting for title or fighting Conor everyone need to stop assuming this is the only way he's fighting
— Ali Abdelaziz (@AliAbdelaziz00) August 16, 2017
With those options, Conor McGregor has said that he wants to fight in December but it would be hard to justify a match with Nurmagomedov with an interim lightweight champion crowned in October.
What are your thoughts on the only two fights that Khabib Nurmagomedov will accept? Will we see “The Eagle” fight in 2017? Let’s discuss this in the comment section.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 8/16/2017.