‘We have a lot of young generation guys to coach’: Khabib Nurmagomedov reveals he plans to help Javier Mendez bring through next MMA generation after Russian champion retired following Justin Gaethje victory at UFC 254
- Khabib Nurmagomedov sensationally retired from MMA after his UFC 254 win
- The Russian beat Justin Gaethje in Abu Dhabi to complete his unbeaten career
- The 32-year-old lost his father to coronavirus in July which impacted his decision
- Khabib has now claimed he will help current coach Javier Mendez in his duties
The Russian fighter beat Justin Gaethje in UFC 254 in his first fight following his father’s death due to coronavirus before announcing his exit from MMA, citing the personal tragedy in July as a motivation behind his decision.
The UFC lightweight champion ended his MMA career over the weekend with an unblemished 29 wins, zero losses but has now revealed he wants to help his coach, Javier Mendez, bring through the next generation of UFC talent.
Khabib Nurmagomedov wants to go into MMA coaching after his shock UFC retirement
The Russian announced his retirement after beating Justin Gaethje in Saturday’s UFC 254
In a conversation with Mendez, Khabib said: ‘We have a lot of young generation guys to coach. We are going to come back on the top very soon.
‘I’m going to help you. I always help you – how many years I help you coach?!’
Khabib’s final fight saw him compete with broken bones in his foot, while the UFC champion also had to overcome mumps in his preparations, with Mendez descriving his training camp as ‘the worst ever.’
After the second-round victory over Gaethje in Abu Dhabi, Khabib said: ‘Today, I want to say, this was my last fight. No way am I going to come here without my father. It was first time, after what happened with my father, when UFC called me about Justin,’ he said.
Khabib (second right) now wants to help coach Javier Mendez (far left) in developing new stars
‘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.
‘I know only one thing I want from UFC, you guys have to be me on No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world, because I deserve this.’
UFC president Dana White, who described the Russian as ‘up there as a GOAT’ refused to be drawn into the idea of a return to the octagon for Khabib, but implied that the door is always open for the Russian.
UFC president Dana White (right) described the UFC Lightweight champion (left) as the ‘GOAT’
White told the media after UFC 254: ‘If the guys want to fight, let them fight. If they don’t want to fight they don’t want to fight.
‘Let him take some time off and heal, not physically but emotionally, with what he’s going through from losing his father.’
UFC rival McGregor also paid respect to Khabib and his career following the shock news on Saturday night.
The Irishman tweeted: ‘Good performance @TeamKhabib,’ he wrote. ‘I will carry on. Respect and condolences on your father again also. To you and family. Yours sincerely, The McGregors.’