Mixed Martial Arts: Dominant Khabib calls time on undefeated MMA career


FILE PHOTO: MMA - UFC 242 - Khabib Nurmagomedov v Dustin Poirier - Men's UFC Lightweight title - Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates - September 7, 2019 Khabib Nurmagomedov reacts after winning his match against Dustin Poirier REUTERS/Christopher Pike/File Photo

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Khabib Nurmagomedov called time on his mixed martial arts career following a second-round submission win over Justin Gaethje on Saturday, leaving his gloves in the centre of the octagon to fulfil a promise to his mother.

He wore down his opponent with his constant forward pressure before mounting Gaethje and locking him in a triangle choke that rendered the American unconscious to extend his record to 29 wins and no defeats.

Many questioned if he would have the heart for the fight against Gaethje following the death of his father Abdulmanap in July from complications caused by COVID-19 at the age of 57.

His father had schooled him in combat sports from an early age and was in his corner in Abu Dhabi in September 2019 when Khabib choked out Dustin Poirier, on that occasion using a rear naked choke in another successful title defence.

"I talked to my mother three days (ago). She didn't want me to go fight without (my) father, but I promised her it's going to be my last fight, and if I give my word, I have to follow this," an emotional Khabib said in the octagon.

"It was my last fight. I know only one thing I want from the UFC - you guys have to put me number one pound-for-pound fighter in the world, because I deserve this."

After a stunning run of 13 wins in eight years and a professional record featuring eight knockouts and 11 submission wins in his 29 victories, few would argue with the 32-year-old who has now left the cage for the last time.

(Reporting by Philip O'Connor; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 18
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
   

Did you find this article insightful?

Yes
No

80% readers found this article insightful

Next In Others

Japanese organisers say 2020 Games delay to cost them $2.8 billion
Leicester's Rodgers defends Soyuncu selection after injury blow
Spurs struggle to get motivated for Europa League: Mourinho
Ogier starts as he means to continue in title decider
Qabil keeps riding on despite horrific experience
Olympics: Refunds sought for 18% of tickets sold in Japan, organisers say
Arsenal's Arteta expects difficult January transfer window
Rallying: Evans a race away from becoming first Welsh world champion
Fans allowed for world championships, but no fancy dress
No wait and SEA Games – sailors follow Olympics tide

Stories You'll Enjoy