While much of the mixed martial arts (MMA) spotlight has shifted back to Conor McGregor over the past few weeks, we must not forget about the man who last defeated “Notorious” inside of the Octagon.
That would be undefeated UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, who dominated McGregor back at UFC 229 in 2018 to capture a memorable fourth-round submission win. That victory ultimately helped propel Khabib into the combat mainstream and turn some much needed attention on his legendary run in UFC.
Part of Khabib’s breakout included rumors of a potential superfight with undefeated boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr., who took out McGregor via 10th-round TKO during their boxing match in 2017. While Khabib isn’t nearly the same type of striker as McGregor is, Mayweather was strongly entertaining the idea of fighting the most dominant name in combat sports.
Much hasn’t changed since those initial rumors, as Mayweather released two fight posters to his Instagram account following the conclusion of McGregor’s win over Donald Cerrone last weekend at UFC 246. One was obviously directed towards “Notorious,” but the other showed Khabib. It’s small publicity to say the least, but at least we know Mayweather still has the undefeated “Eagle” on his radar.
While Khabib is currently expected to defend his lightweight championship opposite Tony Ferguson at UFC 249 this April in Brooklyn, New York, his team is still discussing a future matchup with “Money.” Khabib’s father, Abdulmanap, even went as far as listing stipulations for a potential clash between the two combat dynamos.
“Mayweather has statistics on fights of 50 wins and zero losses, he is the greatest in boxing and he wants to fight with the same champion who did not lose a single fight, with Khabib,” Abdulmanap told Tass.ru (via BJPenn.com). “Everything is fine, but now we have Tony Ferguson on the line.
“We said a long time ago: let us finish with Tony, after that we will work with [the team of Ukrainian boxer Vasily] Lomachenko for six months, then there will be a boxing fight,” he added. “We offer any day anywhere, with only one condition: 11 rounds in boxing and one in mixed martial arts.
“We will stand 11 rounds against the best boxer, so why not go one round according to the rules of MMA with us? But all things will happen after Tony.”
While Mayweather is highly unlikely to accept any rule set that would allow Khabib to wrap his bear-like arms around him at least the discussion is being had. Many believed McGregor would steal the spotlight here in 2020, but if Khabib can lock down a superfight with Mayweather somewhere down the line it would be quite spectacular.
What say you, Maniacs? Is this proposed rule set fair to both fighters?
Let’s hear it!