Khabib Nurmagomedov admits people close to him ‘aren’t happy’ with his retirement
Khabib Nurmagomedov has revealed some of those closest to him are ‘not happy’ with his decision to retire at UFC 254.
The undefeated Russian submitted Justin Gaethje in the second round before hanging up his gloves in the post-fight interview last month, a decision he says he has made because of the death of his father and trainer Abdulmanap earlier this year.
Khabib’s decision stunned fight fans across the world and he has now admitted it has also been difficult for those around him.
"This fight was like no other. The emotions in this fight were completely different," he told RT Sport MMA.
"Everything was completely different without my father. I was offered the fight right after everything happened.
"I had the decision to accept it or turn it down, nobody knew about this, or retire, or I could come back, fight and then retire.
"Now I tell the people close to me that aren’t happy with me retiring that even if I fought ten more times, I’d still have to face that decision.
"This decision could come up when I’m 32, 34, 35. It’s a hard decision because I’ve been fighting all my life.
"I’ve been on the mats for as long as I remember. It’s difficult to leave and do something else. People can’t understand it, but what can you do?”
Khabib finishes his career on 29-0, but many believe he could come back to move to 30 victories, a feat his father always said was a major goal.
Former heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, a friend of Khabib’s, believes he could come out of retirement for a rematch with Conor McGregor.
Khabib made McGregor tap out in the fourth round of their bad-bloodied affair two years ago.