KHABIB NURMAGOMEDOV has opened up about a ‘really difficult decision’ to retire from the UFC – which has upset those close to him.
Normagomedov made a shocking statement After submitting Justin Gethse in round two of their UFC 254 headliner On Fight Island.
It was his first fight after losing his influential father and mentor Abdulmanap, who passed away in July at the age of 57.
Normagomedov, 32, was selected to honor his title defense against Getze, 31. But now seemed to be the right time to walk away.
He said: “Immediately [the death of my father] They gave me a fight, I had to make a decision: end my career, or come back, fight and after that vacation.
“Some people around me are not happy about ending my career, but I say to them, ‘Even if I fight for another 10 years, it’s time for me to leave.’
“In any case that decision comes at the age of 32, 34 or 35.
“It was a very difficult decision for me because I have been doing this all my life, as long as I can remember, and it was very difficult to leave everything and format it.
“People do not understand it, but we will try – we will move forward.
“I know there are a lot of people who support me, not just in Dagestan, there are a lot of fans in Russia and around the world.”
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After suffocating Gaitje, Noormagomedov reached 29-0 and then dedicated the victory to Abdulmanap.
And UFC President Dana White, who believes Normagomedov can reverse his emotional decision to retire. And go back for a final fight.
White said Zach yellow: “I will tell you this, I have not told anyone yet, but Khabib and I are talking.
“He was totally emotional when he got into that fight that night. I have a feeling he could go 30-0.
“I think he’s not going to retire. His father wanted him to reach 30-0, and he wants to honor his father’s wish.”