Khabib Nurmagomedov hints at UFC return in July after Ramadan and vows to ‘smash them all’ on ‘Fight Island’ – The Sun
KHABIB NURMAGOMEDOV looks set to return to the Octagon in July after confirming he will be ready for his next UFC fight quicker than expected.
Undefeated Nurmagomedov, who last fought against Dustin Poirier in September 2019, was not anticipated to climb back into the cage until September or October.
The 31-year-old is currently observing Ramadan in his native Dagestan after last month’s Lightweight Title defence against Tony Ferguson was called off.
That showdown was unable to take place due to the coronavirus outbreak, forcing him to head back from his training camp in the US to Russia.
No.1-ranked challenger Ferguson will take on Justin Gaethje instead this weekend in an interim title bout at the revamped UFC 249 in Jacksonville, Florida.
And the winner has been promised a showdown against Nurmagomedov later this year – possibly at Dana White’s specially-built “Fight Island”.
But in an Instagram message posted last night, the champ seems to have other ideas.
He said: “I can fight anytime – Ramadan finishes May 23. July I’m gonna be ready.”
“Stop talking about me, this is coronatime. When Khabibtime come I will smash all of them.”
Nurmagomedov, who holds a 28-0 record and is on a 12-fight winning-streak in UFC, was criticised for not taking the fight with Ferguson.
The latest postponement was the fifth time a match has been called-off between the two.
Meanwhile, UFC president White says the “Fight Island” he is constructing should be ready by July and it will be designed to host showdowns for the company’s international fighters who may not be able to enter America due to travel restrictions amid Covid-19.
He said: “The infrastructure is being built right now. I'm hoping that it will all be done mid-June.
“Hopefully, we'll be able to have a fight that weekend that it opens, or maybe closer toward the end of June.
“What we're building that for is that I can't predict what tomorrow might bring with this coronavirus, so the hardest thing is going to be getting people in from the United States. This is where we're going to do all our international fights.”
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