Khabib: McGregor is 'finished' as a top fighter
Retired MMA star Khabib Nurmagomedov believes Conor McGregor's time as a top competitor in the octagon is over following his loss to Dustin Poirier at UFC 264.
McGregor dropped his second straight bout against Poirier on Saturday, losing via TKO while also suffering a broken leg in the process. Nurmagomedov feels the leg injury will prevent McGregor from ever fighting at a high level again.
"Without broken legs, yes, (he could be the same). But with broken legs, he's never going to kick the same," Nurmagomedov told ESPN's Brett Okamoto. "With him, no, I don't believe (he'll return to the top). Conor (has) good age, but what happened with his mind, legs - this guy is finished. But, he's good for (the) promotion."
Nurmagomedov, who defeated McGregor to retain the lightweight title in 2018, didn't hold back when asked about his rival's character. McGregor insulted both Poirier and his wife in the buildup to the UFC 264 main event and has also trash-talked Nurmagomedov in the past.
"Money and fame show who you are," Nurmagomedov said. "All the time, we hear that money and fame change people. No. When money and fame come, these two things show who you are. And what has (McGregor) done? He punched an old guy (in a bar in 2019). ... It's just like Dustin said, 'This guy is a bag of shit.'"
Nurmagomedov also doesn't think McGregor is a positive role model for MMA and believes there will be consequences for the sport if his former opponent is backed further.
"I saw a lot of tweets try to support him. How are you gonna support this guy? When kids, (the) young generation, watch him, watch this sport? If you want to promote your fight, promote," Nurmagomedov noted.
"If the MMA community is going to support (these) bad people, this sport is going to go in a bad way."
Nurmagomedov retired following his 2020 victory over Justin Gaethje. He walked away with a 29-0 record.
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