Late last weekend, we learned that undefeated lightweight contender Khabib Nurmagomedov had turned down a UFC 216 bout with Tony Ferguson – which, of course, was supposed to occur back at UFC 209 in March. Speaking to RT.com, Nurmagomedov explained that the October 7 card wouldn’t work for him, and that he was instead hoping to fight Ferguson at UFC 217 on November 4.
“That’s the date I asked UFC for,” he said. “First they offered me a fight on October 7, but I couldn’t accept it. I want to prepare well and I don’t want to put my body at risk. I don’t want to make the same mistake and push my body. I had to take care of my health, something I’ve been doing in the last four months. And now I need at least 100 days of hard work to get back in fighting shape.”
“Now I’m training at 100 percent capacity already. All my media activity is over and I’m going straight to Dagestan for a training camp for a month or a month and a half. Then I’ll go to train in the States for about two months, so I’ll be able to perform at the end of the fall. As I said earlier, we will repeat the same fight again with Tony Ferguson for the belt.”
While Nurmagomedov is apparently happy to wait a little longer for his bout with Ferguson, Ferguson doesn’t seem so keen. On Tuesday afternoon, the streaking American lightweight took to Twitter to bash Nurmagomedov for the delay.
— Tony Ferguson (@TonyFergusonXT) July 26, 2017
“They offer you a fight at UFC 216 and you turn it down?” Ferguson said in his Tweet. “Get off the Tiramisu Cycle. I’m going to keep lifting, SOB.”
Do you think Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov will ever actually fight?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 7/26/2017.