No one can accuse Khabib Nurmagomedov of not being loyal.
Nurmagomedov has threatened to quit UFC if the company fires his teammate, Zubaira Tukhugov. The UFC lightweight champion made the threat in an Instagram post Thursday, just days after defeating Conor McGregor on Saturday night at UFC 229 in Las Vegas.
Here’s what Nurmagomedov posted:
I would like to address @ufc Why didn’t you fire anyone when their team attacked the bus and injured a couple of people? They could have killed someone there, why no one says anything about insulting my homeland, religion, nation, family?
Why do you have to punish my team, when both teams fought. If you say that I started it, then I do not agree, I finished what he had started.
In any case, punish me, @zubairatukhugov has nothing to do with that. If you think that I’ll keep silent then you are mistaken. You canceled Zubaira’s fight and you want to dismiss him just because he hit Conor. But don’t forget that it was Conor who had hit my another Brother FIRST, just check the video.
if you decide to fire him, you should know that you’ll lose me too. We never give up on our brothers in Russia and I will go to the end for my Brother. If you still decide to fire him, don’t forget to send me my broken contract, otherwise I’ll break it myself.
And one more thing, you can keep my money that you are withholding. You are pretty busy with that, I hope it won’t get stuck in your throat. We have defended our honor and this is the most important thing. We intend to go to the end.
Nurmagomedov and McGregor currently are being investigated by the Nevada Athletic Commission for their roles in a post-fight brawl Saturday. Nurmagomedov climbed over the cage after winning in the fourth round via submission and attacked McGregor’s teammate, Dillon Danis, sparking a huge melee in which punches were thrown both inside and outside the octagon.
Tukhugov, a UFC featherweight on Nurmagomedov’s team, was involved in a brief exchange with McGregor. He was scheduled to fight McGregor’s teammate, Artem Lobov, in a UFC bout this month, but both sides confirmed to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani that fight no longer is happening.
It’s fair to wonder what the future holds after UFC president Dana White threatened to cut ties with outside fighters involved in the UFC 229 chaos. But Nurmagomedov’s threat could change things, as his popularity has reached new heights in recent months thanks to his undefeated record (27-0), his title win over Al Iaquinta at UFC 223 and his intense rivalry with McGregor.
Thumbnail photo via Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports Images