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Midnight Mania! Javier Mendez believes Khabib has potential to be ‘greatest coach of all time’

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Khabib Nurmagomedov may be long retired (despite Dana White’s best efforts), but he remains a prominent figure in the sport. He’s an active fight promoter, and his opinions and beliefs are frequently headline news.

More importantly, Nurmagomedov is very active in the coaching scene. Specifically, he’s been instrumental in bringing up the next generation of Russian and Dagestani fighters in both UFC and Bellator. In addition, he’s starting to be sought after by non-Russian fighters from longtime teammates like Luke Rockhold to new faces like Belal Muhammad.

Next weekend at UFC 280, Islam Makhachev will battle Charles Oliveira for the undisputed Lightweight crown. Makhachev has been working with Nurmagomedov as a training partner for many years, but now Nurmagomedov is firmly in the role of coach. If Makhachev is victorious, Khabib will bring home his first UFC belt as a coach less than two years into retirement.

That would be a hell of an accomplishment! American Kickboxing Academy head coach Javier Mendez knows a thing or two about coaching a fighter up to the championship level, and he believes the sky is the limit for Khabib’s coaching potential.

“He’s been coaching forever. Even when he was fighting, he was coaching. He’d be sparring through these five rounds and all of a sudden he’d be sitting there with us coaching the guys,” Mendez said on the UFC unfiltered podcast about Nurmagomedov (via Cole Shelton). “He’s been doing that forever. His father had trained him from such a young age to take the responsibility over, as a fighter, as a coach, and he’s taking over his father’s footsteps. He’s learned from me, he’s learned from his father, mostly his father. But to me, he’s on track, in my opinion, because of his age, what he’s doing, the camp I see, the fighters he has, he’s on track to being the greatest coach of all time, in my opinion. I see it. I see the writing on the wall.”


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Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.

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