Former UFC lightweight and featherweight champion, ‘The Notorious’ Conor McGregor has given his two cents regarding the recent news surrounding arch-foe, Khabib Nurmagomedov’s withdrawal from UFC 249 on April 18th.
Late yesterday evening, Nurmagomedov revealed he would have to “cancel” his appearance at UFC 249 in a lightweight title defence against Tony Ferguson – due to travel restrictions caused by the novel coronavirus pandemic. The undefeated sambo-specialist revealed on Monday how he was stranded in his native Dagestan after he travelled from California – having been informed by the UFC, that the April 18th. event would “100%” be contested away from United States soil. With Khabib’s justified withdrawal, a matchup between himself and Ferguson has been scrapped for a fifth separate time.
McGregor, a former opponent of Nurmagomedov, took to his official Twitter account on Thursday afternoon, where he congratulated Ferguson and explained how Khabib elected to “chicken” out of the UFC 249 pairing first.
“The fact of this matter is, both Khabib (Nurmagomedov) and Tony (Ferguson) where (sic) engaged in a game of chicken here towards the fight bell,” McGregor wrote. “With Khabib chickening out first. Making it 3-2 in pullouts in Tony’s favour. Khab (sic) scurried out of the U.S. to home, and amid the crisis. Very high risk. Congrats Tony.”
McGregor, who last competed in the main event of UFC 246 in a forty-second knockout of Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone, maintained he was in fighting shape, but explained how he was somewhat glad he didn’t have a fight officially penned.
“I am in shape to fight right now!” McGregor wrote. “At the beginning of all this, I said to myself – I’m happy I don’t have an official fight booked. If I did, I would have consumed all the incorrect data to support me taking part in the bout, and I would have followed through, competed. And won.”
In terms of potential replacement opponents for Nurmagomeov, perennial lightweight contender, Justin Gaethje has been offered to Tony Ferguson on short notice. Fellow former interim champion, Dustin Poirier, has also offered his services for April 18th. following his unification defeat to Nurmagomedov in September of last year.