- Khabib Nurmagomedov received by submission at UFC 254, sending Justin Gaethje to sleep within the second spherical.
- After the win, Nurmagomedov dropped to his knees in the course of the UFC Octagon in Abu Dhabi and cried.
- He then introduced his retirement, saying he can’t proceed to combat with out his father, Abdulmanap, who died earlier within the 12 months.
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FIGHT ISLAND — Khabib Nurmagomedov despatched Justin Gaethje to sleep, cried in the course of the Octagon at UFC 254, after which introduced his retirement from skilled preventing.
It was one more submission for the Dagestan sambo specialist who prolonged his skilled MMA file to 29-Zero with a victory over the American hanging maestro Justin Gaethje.
It brings to an finish a rare profession as Nurmagomedov, the UFC light-weight champion, took his gloves off for the ultimate time at Abu Dhabi — a spot which has turn into his house away from house.
When the UFC President Dana White, together with the Abu Dhabi division of tradition and tourism (DCT), constructed an space wherein the world’s main blended martial arts agency might maintain worldwide occasions amid the coronavirus pandemic, Fight Island grew to become an sudden star in July.
UFC executives performed early morning golf on the Yas Links, Russian athletes grappled on the sand at Yas Beach, and different fighters took joyrides in pimped-out sports activities automobiles across the $1.32 billion Yas Marina race monitor.
And then there have been the fights.
Perhaps the one manner the second Fight Island competition from September to October might high the inaugural occasion in July was the inclusion of Nurmagomeov.
But only a few outdoors Nurmagomedov’s household might have anticipated his 29th match, and win, to be his final.
“This is my last fight,” Nurmagomedov mentioned, months after his dad and coach, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, died after coronavirus problems. “No way I’m going to come here without my father.”
Watch any Nurmagomedov combat and you will see dominance whatever the stage he is competed at.
He’s out-pointed Rafael dos Anjos, submitted Conor McGregor with a neck crank earlier than flying out the cage like an eagle to assault the Irishman’s Octagonside associates, and he is made Dustin Poirier faucet to a rear-naked choke at UFC 242 final 12 months.
The Fight Island finale on Saturday, October 24 contained in the purpose-built Flash Forum on Yas Island was his first combat since defeating Poirier, his first of the pandemic, and his first since dropping his father.
It was additionally one in all his greatest. A win wherein he pressed Gaethje from the beginning, forcing an uncomfortable tempo onto his opponent.
Gaethje received the opening spherical on two of the three judges’ scorecards maybe as a result of he approached the combat with aggression, touchdown 23 of 37 strikes for a 63% accuracy which included sturdy punches and bruising leg kicks.
Late within the opener, Nurmagomdov landed the second of his two takedowns in that spherical and sought an armbar end, nonetheless, 5 minutes had elapsed and the primary body was over.
But little greater than a minute and a half into the second spherical, Nurmagomedov had his end.
Founded on his knowledgeable grappling, Nurmagomedov took Gaethje down for the ultimate time within the combat, loved full mount, and labored a triangle choke submission.
The challenger tapped once more however the referee Jason Herzog didn’t intervene, unaware Gaethje had been crushed, and so he ended up unconscious.
As cutsmen entered the Octagon to verify on Gaethje, Nurmagomedov dropped to his knees within the heart of the Octagon and could possibly be seen sobbing into his forearms.
As calm restored in the primary occasion of the night, Nurmagomedov dropped his gloves on the ground and introduced his profession was over.
Nurmagomedov advised his mom he’d retire
He wished to bow out as the game’s No.1 fighter, having promised his mom it will be his ultimate combat.
“Thank you for these guys, these guys with me, been with my father for greater than 10 years. All my workforce, AKA [American Kickboxing Academy] with coach Javier [Mendez], I like him a lot, all my workforce.
“Today, I wish to say, this was my final combat. No manner am I going to return right here with out my father. It was first time, after what occurred with my father, when UFC referred to as me about Justin.
“I talk with my mother three days, she don’t want that I go fight without father. I promised her, it’s going to be my last fight, and if I give my word, I have to follow this. It was my last fight here.”
Nurmagomedov recommended he is cleared the division of challengers
“I do know just one factor I would like from UFC, you guys should be me on No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter on the earth, as a result of I deserve this.
“UFC undisputed, undefeated light-weight champion, 13-0, 13 in UFC, 29 in all professional MMA profession. I feel I deserve it.
“One other thing, I wish to say thanks Lorenzo Fertitta, thanks Dana [White]. Thank you a lot, and naturally I do not neglect about Joe Silva who signed me right here in UFC. Joe Silva, thanks.
“All this UFC workforce, everyone around the globe, this complete pandemic stuff, they’re doing nice present. Thank you a lot Justin.
“Justin, 2016 I bear in mind after I reduce weight, you helped me lots. Thank you, brother. I do know you’re a nice man, I understand how you maintain your folks. I do know a number of issues about you, due to your mother and father, as a result of at some point, it’ll occur one thing. You by no means know what’s going to occur tomorrow, you by no means know.
“Today is my last fight here in UFC. It was my father’s dream. Dustin and Conor are going to fight January, I choke them out, both of them. I’m not interested in this.”