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Conor McGregor responds to ‘disrespectful’ Khabib tweet: ‘That’s fighting talk’

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The war of words between Conor and Khabib isn’t over apparently, with McGregor welcoming Khabib for another cage fight should the retired champion be interested.

UFC 229: Khabib v McGregor Press Conference Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images

While Khabib Nurmagomedov may be retired from active UFC competition, that doesn’t mean he’s done taking shots at his nemesis, Conor McGregor, over social media. Shortly after McGregor lost his bout against Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 via knockout, Khabib (or perhaps Khabib’s agent, who is well known for stirring pots on his clients’ accounts) posted a diss directed at “The Notorious.”

“This is what happened when you change your team, leave the sparring partners who made you a champion and sparring with little kids, far away from reality,” the post from Nurmagomedov’s Twitter account read.

The tweet doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. McGregor’s team has remained by-and-large the same for years. He did hold the camp for the Poirier rematch at the Shinobi Academy in Portugal, owned by one of his cardio coaches. But this is the same guy he’s been working with since the Nate Diaz loss. And he brought a rotating cast of the rest of his standard Straight Blast Gym training partners over to Portugal with him.

If anything, McGregor probably needs to change up his team of training partners more. But given the COVID-19 situation, we understand that may be tricky at this time.

“My team has been the team since day one, I haven’t changed any team,” McGregor said when asked about the tweet at the UFC 259 post-fight press conference. “It is what it is. Respect the athletes and that’s the character of the man behind the mask. Whatever, what’s he going to do? Does he want to come back or not? Because he’s not throwing no leg kicks, you know what I’m saying? I got up off the ground against Dustin. I turned Dustin. You know what I mean? Look at little pockets of that sequence where he fights.”

“Like I said: styles make fights. Every fight is a different fight. That’s why all this prestige that people try and hold onto, I don’t hold onto that. Whether someone has multiple wins or multiple losses. Every fight between every man is different, and that’s it. Dustin’s style just played into it today and he has the durability and he has the experience and he has that leg kick now in his arsenal. I’ll adjust and keep going.”

“But if [Khabib] wants to have his disrespectful comments, come back and let’s go again, my man. I’m here for it. That’s fighting talk, so if you’re coming back, come back. You try and do it. You know what I mean? So that’s that.”

Unfortunately for McGregor and us fans, it doesn’t seem likely that Khabib will return from retirement to rematch him. Even UFC President, Dana White, who spent the lead up to UFC 257 hyping a potential 30th fight for Nurmagomedov, finally admitted after the event that the Dagestani fighter was not interested.

“He said to me ‘Dana, be honest with yourself. I’m so many levels above these guys. I’ve beat these guys,’” White said. “I don’t know. But it doesn’t sound very positive.”

So I hope you guys enjoy the social media jabs, because that’s probably all we’ll ever get from these two going forward.