Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Tony Ferguson will go down in UFC historical past as one of many biggest fights that by no means occurred. Although, the promotion tried mightily to be sure that wasn’t the case.
The bout was booked 5 occasions, however varied points waylaid these plans. There was Nurmagomedov allegedly getting sick from tiramisu the day earlier than weigh-ins, Ferguson injuring his knee by tripping over TV cables after which, lastly, the COVID-19 pandemic.
Regardless of these two by no means really combating, that hasn’t stopped a struggle or phrases between them persevering with on by means of the years. Ferguson nonetheless maligns Nurmagomedov on-line, accusing him of ‘working’ from him.
Just lately, a few of Nurmagomedov’s phrases about Ferugson—from his little publicized 2019 autobiography KHABIBTIME—have gotten some consideration (ht MMA Mania).
In these passages, shared by @SmeshJitsuOnly on-line, Nurmagomedov is unabashed in his criticism for Ferguson. In these passages, Nurmagomedov paints a smug, self-superior image of himself whereas lambasting Ferguson’s character, perspective and upbringing.
Test it out:
“Generally I felt sure gratitude in direction of the man. I’ve already written that my need to return after three of extreme accidents and having nearly determined to finish my profession was ignited due to my overwhelming impulse to fulfill El Cucuy and punch him on the pinnacle in order that he would take a look at life in another way.
That was the best way it was. The potential of lastly silencing this poorly introduced up dude turned one of many most important causes for my returning to the cage.
I’ve a set of feelings in direction of this man like people who would flood the streets of Makhachkala on the age of sixteen or twenty, after I noticed in entrance of me an impudent lout who was boasting how sturdy he was.
I by no means had missed the chance to thrash such a smartass and on the identical time to verify which of his claims about his skills was true. So I checked out Ferguson and proceed to take action with eyes filled with sarcasm and anger.
I guarantee you that my perspective promised nothing good for Tony.”
“Work on the preparation for the battle was as normal, often interrupted by laughter and irony about Tony’s newest assault on me within the media. And actually, it was humorous to observe an opponent attempting to unsteady you mentally, with out even realizing that the strategies he used have been like somewhat tickle. Every little thing went as per normal.
For some purpose, he was abusive from the very starting of our interplay, not being embarrassed in any respect with the expressions he used. I shortly realized that it was a approach of asserting himself. What for? I couldn’t perceive it. Sure, in fact, what is known as trash speak is a side of the from side to side on the UFC, however Ferguson instantly started to transgress all affordable boundaries. I actually prefer to tweet one thing in opposition to a future opponent of ‘specialists’ on Twitter or Instagram posts, however what El Cucuy does can’t be supported in any approach. It’s pure grime. I step by step fashioned a selected contempt for Ferguson as an individual. To be exact — as an individual. I believe it’s fallacious to deal with him badly from a sporting viewpoint; he’s a tremendous fighter, a winner, a champion in my division for a interval and the possessor of one of many longest successful streaks within the UFC. He’s positively an important athlete. Nonetheless, a totally mediocre upbringing and the behaviour it has generated makes him typically merely a nonentity.”
Sadly for Ferguson, he has seen his relevancy within the sport dwindle because the final and remaining time he was booked to look reverse Nurmagomedov.
The pair have been scheduled to fulfill at UFC 249, again when it was scheduled for April 18, 2020 at New York’s Barclays Middle. Nonetheless, whereas press for that huge occasion was beneath approach the world started to alter in sudden and dramatic methods.
The COVID-19 pandemic started to alter our lives as we knew them round March 2020. That’s when, as numbers of circumstances and deaths terrifyingly rose the world over, worldwide sports activities started to close down and shut its doorways.
UFC 249 was moved again to Could 9 and the UFC scrambled for a brand new location, with New York turning into one of many first US epicentres for the virus. The UFC picked Jacksonville, FL for the brand new venue after which scrambled to get fighters there to compete.
Ferguson was in a position to attend, however Nurmagomedov was locked down in Russia. So his spot went to Justin Gaethje. Gaethje proceeded at hand Ferguson the worst beating of El Cucy’s UFC profession.
Since then Ferguson has misplaced one sided efforts to newly topped light-weight champion Charles Oliveira and Beneil Dariush (final evening at UFC 262).