Moscow - Khabib Nurmagomedov says he doesn't think Conor McGregor's retirement is for real.
McGregor said last week he was quitting mixed martial arts but Nurmagomedov, who beat the Irish fighter for the UFC lightweight title in October, isn't buying it.
Speaking on Tuesday in his native Russia at a Moscow
university, Nurmagomedov said McGregor "couldn't reach a deal with the
UFC and it's so they feel they've lost him and they could lose money."
Nurmagomedov added: "I don't think he's finished."
previously retired in April 2016 but reversed the decision two days
later and returned to the UFC. The 30-year-old Irishman hasn't won a
fight since beating Eddie Alvarez in November 2016 to become the first
UFC fighter to hold championship belts in two divisions at once.
also said he would like to fight again in September, two months after
the end of his Nevada State Athletic Commission ban for the chaotic
brawl with McGregor's team after the October fight. McGregor's sanction
ends on Saturday.
However, Nurmagomedov said he didn't want to fight
before longer sanctions on two other Russian fighters also end. Abubakar
Nurmagomedov and Zubaira Tukhugov were each banned for one year by the
Nevada State Athletic Commission for their part in the brawl. Those
sanctions run until October 6.
"They were banned because of me," Nurmagomedov said.