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Coach: Khabib Nurmagomedov ‘used as a pawn’ in UFC’s negotiations with Conor McGregor

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MMA: UFC Fight Night-Horcher vs Nurmagomedov Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Maybe this guy was right after all?

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) expected to pay a pretty penny for the services of Conor McGregor, who will headline the UFC 205 pay-per-view (PPV) event against Eddie Alvarez a week from Saturday night (Nov. 12, 2016) in New York City.

Unless, of course, there was certain Dagestani variable thrown into the mix.

Prior to signing on the dotted line, “Notorious” had stiff competition from No. 1 ranked contender Khabib Nurmagomedov, who not only signed a contract to fight Alvarez at UFC 205, but also at 206 should the lightweight champ not be ready in time for the “Big Apple” bash.

Not surprisingly, American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) head coach Javier Mendez has a problem with that sort of bait-and-switch.

“By all rights, people want to see Conor fight, no problem,” Mendez told Champions.co (via MMA Junkie). “But don’t give a guy a contract if you’re not intending to give him a fight.”

See a copy of both contracts here.

“I was disappointed,” he continued. “Not disappointed that (Conor) got the title shot, just disappointed that Khabib was used as a pawn, in my opinion. Why give a guy a contract to fight and actually not give him the fight?”

Because it’s cheaper that way!

With his title fight off the table, Nurmagomedov (23-0) was rebooked to throw hands against No. 6-ranked Michael Johnson, who flies with “The Eagle” inside Madison Square Garden.

To see who else is fighting at UFC 205: “Alvarez vs. McGregor” click here.