Khabib Starts Fight Camp, VanZant Injury Update, Cerrone vs. Ferguson Countdown

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistJune 3, 2019

LAS VEGAS, NV - DECEMBER 28:  Khabib Nurmagomedov of Russia holds an open training session for fans and media during the UFC 219 Open Workouts inside T-Mobile Arena on December 28, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

Here are the latest storylines from the world of MMA.


Khabib Back in Training amid Poirier Rumours

Khabib Nurmagomedov's coach, Javier Mendez, has said the UFC lightweight champion has started a fight camp amid rumours about a possible showdown with Dustin Poirier.

"Fight is not official yet but I am excited to start camp with [The Eagle] Khabib Nurmagomedov should it become official for Sept. 7th at Abu Dhabi against a very tough challenge in Dustin Poirier," he said on Instagram (h/t Jed Meshew of MMA Fighting). "But at the end of that night, it will be ‘And Still’."

Nurmagomedov has not been in action since his impressive win over Conor McGregor at UFC 229 in October last year. The champion was then hit with a suspension after a brawl broke out in the Octagon.

The potential meeting with Poirier would take place at UFC 242 in September. Poirier is the interim champion in the division, as he earned an impressive unanimous-decision win over Max Holloway at UFC 236.


VanZant to Have Surgery on Injury

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 19:  Paige VanZant celebrates her victory over Rachael Ostovich in their women's flyweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at the Barclays Center on January 19, 2019 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Josh Hed
Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

UFC flyweight Paige VanZant has confirmed the injury suffered to her right arm will require surgery.

VanZant accrued the issue in sparring and was initially advised the problem did not need to be operated on. However, she appears to have received a new diagnosis, and according to Brett Okamoto of ESPN, the 25-year-old will now go under the knife June 13.

"I actually sparred last month and was doing strength and conditioning," she said, per Okamoto. "I wanted to be on the UFC card on July 20 in Texas, but my chiropractor wanted me to get my arm checked out again before accepting a fight. I saw a surgeon who works with the Portland Trail Blazers, and he told me, 'Yes, you 100 percent need surgery.'"

VanZant posted the following snap on social media Saturday, hinting at a switch to the American Top Team gym:

Paige VanZant @paigevanzant

Big news coming....... 🤭 https://t.co/i8ilvAXEo7

The flyweight was previously in action in January at UFC Fight Night, earning an impressive submission win over Rachael Ostovich. It would appear that with an operation now on the cards, it's doubtful whether we'll see her in the Octagon again in 2019.


UFC Share Ferguson vs. Cerrone Preview

With UFC 238 now less than a week away, MMA fans are beginning to get increasingly excited about the event at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois.

In addition to title fights between Henry Cejudo and Marlon Moraes as well as Valentina Shevchenko and Jessica Eye, Tony Ferguson's clash with Donald Cerrone is expected to be one of the highlights of the night.

In anticipation of the clash, the UFC released the following clip featuring a closer look at the preparations of both men:

Ferguson is currently on an 11-fight winning streak and will be in action for the first time since he stopped Anthony Pettis in October. He'll be hoping success at UFC 238 will pave the way for a possible showdown with Nurmagomedov, as their scheduled UFC 209 showdown was postponed.