If Khabib Nurmagomedov wins at UFC 254, something special is next

Daniel Cunningham
Sep 20, 2018; New York, NY, USA; Khabib Nurmagomedov during a press conference for UFC 229 at Radio City Music Hall. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

The UFC‘s undisputed lightweight king put the retirement rumors to bed at today’s media day. As Khabib Nurmagomedov (28-0) took questions he said that he didn’t believe that he would retire if he defeats Justin Gaethje (22-2) at UFC 254.

Nurmagomedov talked about his love for competition and his love for competing inside the UFC. The champ told reporters, “I love competition. I love competing with the best fighters in the world. That’s why I’m here. I’m not in the UFC to make money.”

There have been a lot of rumors talking about what would be next if Nurmagomedov remains unbeaten at UFC 254. There have been questions on if he would walk away or if he’d rematch Conor McGregor or perhaps a match with Georges St. Pierre. The lightweight champ said Dana White is working on something for him after the fight.

“We have a couple of options. We’re going to think about this after this fight. Dana told me, after this fight, he has something special for me. They said, ‘We have very big things after this fight for you,'” Nurmagomedov told reporters.

What are the UFC’s Plans?

It is unclear right now what the UFC has in store for Khabib if he’s able to defeat Gaethje later this month which will be no easy task. You could make the argument that Justin Gaethje is the hardest stylistic matchup for Khabib inside the UFC‘s lightweight division.

If Khabib wins on October 24th, I think that the GSP fight is definitely one of the options on the table. We’ve also heard about a potential coaching stint on the Ultimate Fighter with Conor McGregor. Although Dana White said that was off the table yesterday.

Khabib Nurmagomedov has become one of the biggest stars in the UFC. If he does only have a couple of fights left with the promotion, I expect the UFC to try to do some big things for him. While nothing is set in stone until after UFC 254, I would expect it to be something big.