Khabib Nurmagomedov’s Father Says His Son Was Used to Lower Conor McGregor’s Asking Price by $3.5M

By Tom Taylor - October 31, 2016

UFC 205, which will emanate from New York City’s hallowed Madison Square Garden on November 12, will be headlined by a lightweight title fight between divisional king Eddie Alvarez and undisputed featherweight champ Conor McGregor. The bout will mark Alvarez’s opportunity to derail one of the biggest hype trains in MMA, and McGregor’s opportunity to make history as the first fighter to hold two UFC titles concurrently. Needless to say, this is a massive fight. For a time, however, it looked as though this fight wouldn’t actually come to fruition, as the UFC had a difficult time negotiating its terms with both fighters involved.

Khabib Nurmagomedov

Our chances of seeing this fight looked bleakest in late September, when UFC President Dana White assured that the next shot at Alvarez’s lightweight title would go to undefeated contender Khabib Nurmagomedov – not McGregor.

An Alvarez vs. Nurmagomedov bout looked even more likely when FS1’s UFC tonight reported it was in the works for UFC 206 in Toronto.

Yet according to Nurmagomedov’s father, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, rumors that the lightweight title shot would go to his son were simply created as a ploy to deflate McGregor’s asking price. If the senior Nurmagomedov is to be believed, this tactic successfully cut the Irishman’s price tag by $3.5 million – half of the $7 million he allegedly requested initially.

If these claims are true, the junior Nurmagomedov has every reason to disgruntled with the UFC, as he was treated as little more than a bargaining chip. Apparently, the UFC offered the streaking lightweight $100,000 as compensation for this debacle, but he was more interested in getting a fight at UFC 205.

This, then, is what led to Nurmagomedov’s undercard bout with Michael Johnson.

Nurmagomedov will enter this prelim bout with a sparkling 23-0 overall record, and a 7-0 mark in the Octagon. When we last saw him in action, he made a successful return after a lengthy stint on the injury list, battering late replacement Darrell Horcher to a second-round TKO. Johnson, meanwhile, will enter his bout with Nurmagomedov with a blistering, first-round knockout of Dustin Poirier in his wake.

Do you think Khabib Nurmagomedov should have gotten the lightweight title shot over Conor McGregor? Make your voice heard in the comments, PENN Nation!


Conor McGregor Eddie Alvarez Khabib Nurmagomedov