Khabib Nurmagomedov reflecting on Dustin Poirier nearly submitting him in front of his father

Khabib Nurmagomedov reflecting on Dustin Poirier nearly submitting him in front of his father

Khabib Nurmagomedov is a hard man.

The longest-reigning UFC lightweight champion was undefeated throughout his career in MMA and had never lost a round until his epic showdown with Conor McGregor.

In the lead up to that bout, Khabib’s mental strength was demonstrated, with chilling pre-fight footage seeing him stay cool as McGregor got right into his face.

Now, footage from his victory over Dustin Poirier in September 2019 has emerged.

Khabib won the fight via a rear-naked choke submission in the third round, but he so very nearly lost the fight as well. It was a close call and the footage shows the inspiration for his escape from a submission and subsequent victory. His father.

Khabib’s father was approximately two metres away from the American locking the Russian in a submission, and reflecting on the fight and that particular moment, Khabib said: “I’m thinking like Dustin is crazy guy, he thinks I’m going to tap in front of my father.”

The footage has provoked plenty of interest on Twitter, where Khabib’s fans are quick to remember a great champion.

On fan tweeted: “The GOAT Khabib,” and another: “Khabib grew up wrestling bears,” and another simple said: “Cold blooded.”

Another drew attention to Khabib’s dedication, posting: “What would you expect from a man who eats, sleeps and trains 24/7?”

However, other fans decided to focus on former UFC lightweight champion, who is still fighting, Charles Oliveira.

One fan tweeted: “Charles in this scenario puts Khabib to sleep,” and another: “Charles would have made him tap in front of his father and mother and his cousins. That’s why he decided to retire at 32.”

But fans of Khabib called for his record in the lightweight category not to be underestimated: “People in this thread talking reckless, like Khabib didn’t run through this whole division.”

However, what can’t be disputed is that Poirier came close to breaking him in that exchange, with the American himself telling Joe Rogan on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast: “I just know how close it was. A game of inches, and I know how close it was. What haunts me more than [not pulling] full guard is me not switching to a D’Arce or anaconda [choke] when he rolled to his side.”

It was at that point that Khabib readjusted his position and gained space where he could breathe. Soon, the champ was out of danger and threatening a rear-naked choke. Poirier’s chance had gone.

Khabib’s father was a massive influence on his career, coaching him in wrestling from the age of eight.

Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov was a former wrestler who was also trained in judo. Knowing he was so close during that exchange surely served as inspiration for his son’s escape and subsequent victory.

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