In a highly-anticipated main event at UFC 229, Khabib Nurmagomedov retained his UFC lightweight title with a dominating fourth-round submission of Conor McGregor.
McGregor has stated that he would like a rematch and would be willing to go through any additional hurdles to get there. Meanwhile, Khabib's father, Abdulmanap, appears to be on board.
However, the elder Nurmagomedov is open to the idea of his son fighting McGregor in a boxing ring, speaking to the Russian newspaper, Izvestia.
“As for the fight against Conor under boxing rules, this is a fight we are interested in. Khabib showed that he is able to beat the best strikers of mixed martial arts," Abdulmanap said.
“He said this before, but few believed it. However, after strong victories over Michael Johnson, Edson Barboza, and Conor, people begin to believe.”
Numagomedov knocked McGregor to the canvas in the second round with a hard right hand. It was the Irishman's first fight since he made his professional boxing debut last August when he was stopped inside the 10th round of a light-middleweight contest with retired American superstar Floyd Mayweather Jr., who has also talked about the possibility of boxing Nurmagomedov.
“I remember his five-round fight with (Al) Iaquinta, in which Khabib showed his willingness to fight in absolutely any area, using everything from a left jab to control on the ground. I want to note that the fight against Iaquinta was of great importance to us, there was a belt at stake, and it was important to keep the bout calm and take the win. Which we did!”
It has been over a year since UFC president Dana White announced he would be expanding the Zuffa brand to boxing. It was reported in May that former four-division world champion Mikey Garcia, who is fighting welterweight world titleholder Errol Spence on March 16 at AT&T Stadium in Dallas, was in negotiations to sign with White. However, it appears a deal was never reached.
Zuffa Boxing has still yet to make any waves, but could this be their grand entrance? It actually could be feasible. On the same foot, Golden Boy Promotions, headed by former five-division world titleholder Oscar De La Hoya, is making his promotional debut in the MMA world on Saturday when former UFC titlists Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz square off for the third time at The Forum in Inglewood, California.