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Morning Report: Khabib Nurmagomedov: Tony Ferguson ‘talks too much, that’s why I want to break his face’

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UFC lightweight contender says Tony Ferguson talks too much and that’s why he wants “to break his face.”

Khabib Nurmagomedov EL Esther Lin

Yesterday there were reports originating from a Russian media outlet saying that the long-awaited fight between the two top lightweight contenders Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson was officially headlining UFC 209 and would be confirmed by the UFC in a few days. Shortly afterwards, MMA Fighting’s Ariel Helwani confirmed that those reports were false, taking away a wonderful Christmas/Hanukkah present for the MMA community. But though that fight isn’t official yet, that doesn’t mean it won’t be soon.

In a recent interview with RT Sport, Nurmagomedov explained why he believes he needs to fight Ferguson next and why he thinks it’s such a compelling fight.

“The UFC asked me about this fight — March 4, UFC 209 — and I said yes, I want to fight this, I want to take this fight. I want to fight with Tony and we — everybody, my team — are waiting for his answer.

“I think this is a real high-level fight in the lightweight division right now. Nine-win streak in UFC versus eight-win streak, I think UFC before never made this kind of fight because nine win streak versus eight-win streak, this has never happened before. I think this is a very big fight. Everybody wants to watch this fight and I want to take this fight.”

Nurmagomedov-Ferguson is a troublesome fight. Should it eventually come to pass, this will be the third attempt to match these two fighters up. Previously both men have pulled out of scheduled bouts against the other due to injury. And before this one even gets officially booked there’s been a great deal of controversy surrounding it.

Ferguson has been calling out Nurmagomedov all year but two weeks ago, Ferguson refused the bout citing inequitable compensation. Then last week, UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo says he was offered an interim title fight against Nurmagomedov but claimed the Dagestani lightweight turned the bout down. Nurmagomedov responded saying he wants to fight Ferguson, not “bully the little,” which prompted to Ferguson to respond appreciatively saying, “real recognize real.”

It was an interesting change of pace from two guys who have been jawing at each other for over a year. And though there recent interactions who an underlying respect between the two, that doesn’t mean the fight won’t be a little bit personal.

“I think he’s a tough fight, good fighter,” said Nurmagomedov. “Little bit talk too much, that’s why I want to break his face. I like this fight.”

UFC 209 will be held on March 4th in Las Vegas, Nevada.


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2007: Yuka Tsuji successfully defended her Smackgirl lightweight championship at Smackgirl: Starting Over, winning a unanimous decision over Seo Hee Ham.


I hope everyone had an excellent weekend and an excellent holiday if you celebrate anything this time of year. Short fight week this weekend so enjoy it, the year is finally coming to a close.

If you find something you'd like to see in the Morning Report, just hit me up on Twitter @JedKMeshew and let me know about it. Also follow MMAFighting on Instagram and add us on Snapchat at MMA-Fighting because we post dope things and you should enjoy them.