Khabib Nurmagomedov's Cousin Usman Signs Multifight Contract with Bellator

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistOctober 2, 2020

FILE - In this Saturday, Oct. 6, 2018 file photo Khabib Nurmagomedov speaks at a news conference after the UFC 229 mixed martial arts event in Las Vegas. UFC champion Khabib Nurmagomedov is probably the best-known Muslim athlete in Russia, and he's rapidly becoming a leading conservative voice at home. When a National Guardsman was killed while apparently trying to break up a fight outside an establishment variously described as a cafe and nightclub early Sunday morning, Nurmagomedov called for a crackdown on the local nightlife in his mostly-Muslim home region of Dagestan.(AP Photo/John Locher, File)
John Locher/Associated Press

UFC star Khabib Nurmagomedov announced Friday that his cousin, Usman Nurmagomedov, has signed a multiyear contract with Bellator MMA.

Per ESPN's Ariel Helwani, Bellator officials confirmed the deal and noted that it is for multiple fights.

Usman is a perfect 11-0 professionally with seven wins by way of knockout and three by submission. Helwani noted that Usman is considered a "major prospect" in the sport.

Usman is following in the footsteps of his cousin, who is among the most successful fighters in the history of the UFC.

The 32-year-old Khabib is the reigning UFC lightweight champion and owns a perfect professional record of 28-0 with 10 submissions and eight knockouts. Among the fighters he has beaten are Conor McGregor, Dustin Poirier and Rafael dos Anjos.

The COVID-19 pandemic has prevented Khabib from competing since UFC 242 in September 2019, but he is lined up for a fight against interim UFC lightweight champ Justin Gaethje in October.

There are some clear similarities between Khabib and Usman, but one major difference is that Khabib has a decorated background in judo and sambo, while Usman specializes in Muay Thai.

According to Helwani, Bellator officials said the current plan is for Usman to compete in the lightweight division and make his debut for the promotion in December or January.