For the fifth time: Khabib vs Ferguson on verge of being cancelled again
“I hear they are looking to organise it with or without me. OK, go ahead,” Nurmagomedov in a video uploaded on Instagram Live on Saturday.Updated: Mar 30, 2020 22:46 IST
The unbeaten UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov was scheduled to face American MMA star Tony Ferguson at UFC 249 on April 18 in what promised to be a cracker of a bout. But with the coronavirus pandemic posing a major roadblock to the event, it seems that the fight could face a cancellation, for the fifth time.
The pair was set to meet on April 18 at Barclay’s Center in New York but the venue was ruled out due to the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic in the city. Later, UFC president Dana White said that the fight would 99.9 per cent take place at a different venue, but Khabib had already left for Russia, which has been kept under lockdown to contain the pandemic.
“Currently, I am in Dagestan and I am training and preparing every day, although I don’t know what am I preparing for, because after we came to Russia we also learned that the borders are going to be locked. Same as the States, same in Europe, Emirates -- everywhere. The whole world is in quarantine right now. So now I am hearing that they are looking to organise it with or without me. OK, go ahead,” Khabib said in a video uploaded on Instagram Live on Monday.
“I am even hearing that they are looking for an opponent for Tony, because he is in the States and I am here in Russia. But I am here not on my own will. I hear they are looking to organise it with or without me. OK, go ahead,”
There were reports that the UFC might be planning to hold the fight in United Arab Emirates behind closed doors. “The UFC told me that this fight 100% isn’t happening in the USA, and even if it’s not happening in the Emirates it will happen on this side of Atlantic,” Nurmagomedov added.
“Now I don’t really know what’s going on. It’s really hard to train and cut your weight when the whole world is locked down and you don’t know what you are preparing for.”
If the fight gets cancelled, it will not be the first time it would happen with these two fighters involved. A fight between Khabib and Ferguson has been cancelled four times before because of health or fitness issues.