Khabib Says He's Retired, Won't Return to UFC; Thinks Conor McGregor Crossed the Line

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVAugust 3, 2021

FILE - In this file photo dated Monday, Nov. 26, 2018, UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov holds the trophy belt during a news conference in Moscow, Russia. Khabib Nurmagomedov said Tuesday April 2, 2019, he doesn’t think Conor McGregor’s retirement is for real, adding, “I don’t think he’s finished.” (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin, FILE)
AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin

Khabib Nurmagomedov reiterated Monday night that he is retired and has no plans to ever return to the UFC.

In an interview with TMZ Sports, Khabib was emphatic when asked about his future inside the Octagon:

Responding to a question about whether he will ever fight again, Khabib said "no" several times in a row.

Khabib was also asked if he felt Conor McGregor "crossed the line" with a tweet that seemed to reference his father, which was later deleted. Khabib responded, "I think so."

After Khabib tweeted, "Good always defeats evil. Very happy for Dustin Poirier," in the wake of Poirier's victory over McGregor at UFC 264, McGregor tweeted and then deleted, "Covid is good and father is evil?"

Khabib's father, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, died in July 2020 due to complications from COVID-19.

McGregor and Khabib have a well-documented rivalry that dates back to 2018. Before UFC 223, McGregor threw a metal dolly through the window of a bus Khabib was riding on for media.

Then, at UFC 229, Khabib beat McGregor by fourth-round submission to retain the UFC lightweight title and remain undefeated. After the fight, a huge brawl broke out inside the Octagon.

McGregor continued to poke and prod Khabib on social media in the weeks, months and years after that fight.

Khabib went on to fight two more times, beating Poirier and Justin Gaethje. After beating Gaethje at UFC 254 in October by submission, Khabib announced his retirement.

Nurmagomedov cited keeping a promise to his mother and no longer wanting to fight after the passing of his father as reasons for stepping away.

Since Khabib is just 32 years old and owns a perfect record of 29-0, speculation has persisted regarding him possibly fighting again one day.

Khabib continues to make it clear that he has no plans to fight again, however, even with McGregor calling him out repeatedly.

As for McGregor, he has now lost back-to-back fights to Poirier, and he must rehab a leg injury before fighting again, as he suffered a broken tibia in his second loss to Poirier last month.