Khabib Told Dana White He's 'Levels Above' Conor McGregor, Dustin Poirier

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 24, 2021

Russian UFC fighter Khabib Nurmagomedov speaks after wining against UFC fighter Dustin Poirier, of Lafayette, La., during Lightweight title mixed martial arts bout at UFC 242, in Yas Mall in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Saturday , Sept.7 2019. (AP Photo/ Mahmoud Khaled)
Mahmoud Khaled/Associated Press

Khabib Nurmagomedov apparently doesn't think it's worth coming out of retirement after Dustin Poirier defeated Conor McGregor at UFC 257 on Saturday night.

That is what the current UFC lightweight champion indicated to president Dana White regarding a matchup with the winner.

"I did talk to Khabib. And he said to me, 'Dana, be honest with yourself. I'm so many levels above these guys. I beat these guys,'" White told reporters after UFC 257. "I don't know. But it doesn't sound very positive. We'll see."

Nurmagomedov announced his retirement after his October win over Justin Gaethje at UFC 254. His two wins before that came against Poirier and McGregor, both via submission.

White indicated Khabib could return if he felt someone deserved a title shot.

"He said, 'If these guys do something spectacular, show me something spectacular, and make me want to come back and fight,'" White said last week, per Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports. "I have the feeling if somebody delivers, and it could be on the main event or the co-main event [Dan Hooker vs. Michael Chandler]."

On the other hand, Nurmagomedov told Sport24 that another fight isn't in his plans.

"I have achieved almost everything in this sport, and there isn't someone I would like to fight now," he said.

Khabib already has convincing wins over the No. 1, No. 2 and No. 4 competitors in the lightweight rankings, while No. 3 Charles Oliveira has yet to prove himself against the other top fighters in the division.

Though a McGregor win Saturday might have led to a high-profile rematch against Nurmagomedov, it doesn't appear as though the reigning champ will battle anyone in the near future.