Monday 15 July 2019

'He tapped and begged me not to kill him' - Khabib Nurmagomedov taunts Conor McGregor and rules out rematch

Khabib Nurmagomedov locks in a rear naked choke on Conor McGregor. Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile
Khabib Nurmagomedov locks in a rear naked choke on Conor McGregor. Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Harry Clarke

Khabib Nurmagomedov has all but ruled out a rematch with Conor McGregor as the UFC lightweight champion says the Irishman does not deserve to share the octagon with him again.

McGregor tapped out against the Russian in the fourth round of their UFC229 bout last October, a night that will be remembered for the chaotic scenes afterwards when a mass brawl erupted after Nurmagomedov scaled the cage to launch an attack on McGregor's entourage.

McGregor announced his "retirement" from the octagon last March, but has since hinted at his willingness to return. But, speaking at a press event to promote his title defence against Dustin Poirier this September, Nurmagomedov says a rematch with McGregor is not on the cards.

"The last three years he only have one victory in amateur boxing, how (does) he deserve rematch?" said Nurmagomedov.

"He tapped. He begged me 'please, don't kill me' and he talks about rematch. Tony Ferguson on the line. People who have win streak are on the line but not the guy who don't win nothing the last three years.

"I have a lot of work without him. Right now, I'm focused on September 7."

Ferguson extended his winning run to 12 with a second-round TKO victory over Donald Cerrone at UFC 238 last weekend. He has his sights fixed on Nurmagomedov but would welcome a money-spinning fight with McGregor.

"If it's McNuggets (McGregor) for a money fight, he's an athlete, too," said Ferguson. "I know the division misses him. I'm pretty sure he misses the fight game, too.

"I mean, seriously, we need to see these fighters keep coming out and represent the sport, because that's why you got into it. Because you're a f***ing athlete, man.

"Keep coming back because when it's your time to retire, go and retire man.

"But if you've made a name in this sport, and you're able and you're within the age limit, keep f***ing competing. I really want to keep doing that."

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