Khabib Nurmagomedov dismisses talk of $100m UFC rematch with 'idiot' Conor McGregor

The undefeated lightweight champion has again been linked to his former foe should he come through his title defence against Tony Ferguson

Oct 6, 2018; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Khabib Nurmagomedov (red gloves) fights Conor McGregor (blue gloves) during UFC 229 at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
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Khabib Nurmagomedov says he has no intention of a rematch with “idiot” Conor McGregor, despite the UFC reportedly willing to offer him $100 million (Dh367.2m) for the bout.

The undefeated lightweight champion, who hasn't fought since last September's historic UFC 242 in Abu Dhabi, has again been linked to his former foe should he come through his April 18 title defence against Tony Ferguson.

Nurmagomedov, 31, stopped McGregor in their only encounter thus far, back in October 2018, which climaxed a build-up beset by bad blood between the rival camps with a mass brawl immediately after the fight.

Last month, McGregor made a triumphant return to the UFC with a 40-second destruction of Donald Cerrone. It was his first victory in the sport since 2016.

On Tuesday at FC Anzhi in his native Dagestan, Nurmagomedov was once more asked about meeting the controversial Irishman, but said: “I’m surprised that people even question me about a rematch. It seems that people want to continue the festivities after that fight.

"Everyone saw what happened in the octagon. I controlled the fight every step of the way. I did everything I wanted to him; he even gave up. How can we even discuss a rematch? We can only talk about continuing the festivities and making money. The question is: do I want that? I am focused on Tony Ferguson."

When probed whether he would be interested in fighting McGregor for $100m, Nurmagomedov said: "Why do I need that kind of money? There are so many organisations … there’s not only football for the blind, there’s sambo and other sports. Let [UFC] give it to them, if they don’t know what to do with the money.

"But giving me $100 million to beat up that idiot again? I don’t think that’s rational."

Having defeated Dustin Poirier by third-round submission on Yas Island in September, Nurmagomedov’s professional record stands at 28-0. On April 18, he takes on Ferguson at UFC 249 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, in a fight that has been made four times previously without ever coming to fruition.

"A very serious fight,” Nurmagomedov said. “For the past month and a half I’ve been consistently training day and night. I’ve gotten myself in good shape, to where I’m supposed to be 70 days before a fight. I feel great.

"It’s impossible to predict a fight – what direction it’ll go in - that’s very difficult. I never worried about an opponent’s actions, what he’ll do and how he’ll do it. I always study an opponent’s strengths and try to deflect them when I get in the cage.

"You, however, never saw a cut on me, not even a black eye. So I don’t think it’ll be a problem. My head and skin are good, nobody ever cut me and I don’t think I’ll get one that’s so bad that the judges stop the fight. It’ll be interesting. I’ve never been hit in a way that left a black eye, so he’s got a task for himself."