Khabib After Conor McGregor's Retirement: There Can Be Only 1 King in the Jungle

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistMarch 26, 2019

LAS VEGAS, NV - OCTOBER 06:  Khabib Nurmagomedov of Russia reacts following a post-fight incident during the UFC 229 event inside T-Mobile Arena on October 6, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov has responded to Conor McGregor's retirement announcement with a social-media post stating: "There can be only one king in the jungle."

The Russian beat McGregor in an acrimonious bout in what stands to be the Irishman's last in MMA following his Tuesday announcement:

Conor McGregor @TheNotoriousMMA

Hey guys quick announcement, I’ve decided to retire from the sport formally known as “Mixed Martial Art” today. I wish all my old colleagues well going forward in competition. I now join my former partners on this venture, already in retirement. Proper Pina Coladas on me fellas!

Nurmagomedov was never likely to wish his nemesis well and posted his response to the news on Twitter:

khabib nurmagomedov @TeamKhabib

There can be only one king in the jungle. Only ☝️ https://t.co/BuqVNUkoR0

There is understandable scepticism as to whether McGregor's announcement is for real:

Jason Smith @howaboutafresca

Conor McGregor loves the limelight. He'd retire in the middle of the night, after not retiring during his appearance on Jimmy Fallon? It just sounds fishy - like it's some sort of publicity thing we don't yet know the details on...

Chamatkar Sandhu @SandhuMMA

I've had 10 minutes to process Conor McGregor's retirement tweet. My thoughts: https://t.co/YqmmdvmUt0

The former two-weight champion announced he was calling time on his career in April 2016 but ended up fighting twice more before the year was over.

If it does prove to be the end of the line for the 30-year-old, he will bow out of MMA with a 21-4 record:

UFC on BT Sport @btsportufc

If this really is the end for Conor McGregor, he has given us some iconic moments... Exhibit A: His 13-second KO of Jose Aldo 😱 https://t.co/A5F2Dt5FeZ

His loss to Khabib came via a fourth-round submission that saw "the Eagle" defend his lightweight belt and extend his record to 27-0.

A rematch between the pair would have been a huge draw, but McGregor looks to have ended any chance of the pair meeting again.

Nurmagomedov was recently called out by Nate Diaz, who last fought in an August 2016 loss via majority decision to McGregor at welterweight.