Dana White reveals he WILL try to coax Khabib Nurmagomedov out of retirement for one more fight when they meet on Fight Island ahead of UFC 257
- Dana White will try to persuade Khabib to fight one more time in the UFC
- The Russian retired from fighting after defending his title against Justin Gaethje
- Khabib has reiterated his desire to stay retired following the death of his father
- However, White will talk with Khabib about a return when they meet this month
Dana White says he will press Khabib Nurmagomedov about coming out of retirement for one more fight when the two meet on ‘Fight Island’ later this month.
The Russian shocked the fighting world when he walked away from the sport just seconds after defeating No 1 challenger Justin Gaethje back in October.
Last month, Khabib reiterated his intention to stay retired despite calls for him to have a highly-anticipated rematch with Conor McGregor, who has since come out of retirement himself to face Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 this month.
Dana White (right) will try and persuade Khabib Nurmagomedov (left) to fight one more time
Khabib will be present at the event on January 23 to watch his cousin Umar in action and has already agreed to meet White for talks.
The UFC president refused to strip the undefeated Dagestani of his lightweight title in the hope he can persuade him to don the gloves one more time.
‘I’m obviously meeting with him because I think that he should fight again,’ White told ESPN.
‘Look at what he did to Justin Gaethje [in October]. Look at what he’s done to every opponent he has faced.
The 32-year-old announced his retirement after defending his title against Justin Gaethje (R)
The Russian reiterated his desire to remain retired from the sport last month amid return talk
‘I think he should fight again and I’m going to press him as hard as I can for one more.’
Khabib suggested last month that the winner of McGregor vs Poirier will eventually succeed him as the lightweight champion, given that he is ready to vacate his belt.
He told Match TV via translation by RT Sport last month: ‘The top three [lightweight] fighters right now are Poirier, McGregor and [Islam] Makhachev. He is not in the top five yet, but those are the best fighters.
‘My belt will [eventually] be taken by the winner of Dustin and Conor.
‘Dana and I are in touch and did not discuss the moment with the vacant belt,’ he said. ‘This is because they want me to continue. This is clear – I have been in the league for nine years and have not lost.
UFC president White (right) and Khabib (left) are set for crunch talks on Fight Island this month
‘I have a story, a big fanbase. I don’t blame them and their desire is understandable. They persuade, I will not hide, but this is not surprising.
‘They offer conditions and fighters, but it’s hard to surprise fighters. I finished half of the top 10 ahead of schedule.
‘And so yes, I repeat: there are conditions and offers. In a couple of weeks, Dana and I will discuss all the points.’
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