Umar Nurmagomedov’s UFC debut has reportedly been moved to an earlier date, meaning Khabib Nurmagomedov may not be Octagon-side for Conor McGregor’s upcoming rematch with Dustin Poirier.
Umar Nurmagomedov will no longer fight Sergey Morozov at UFC 257 with the promotion deciding to move the bantamweight bout to an earlier date.
Nurmagomedov, the cousin of lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, had been set to make his UFC debut against Morozov on the card headlined by Conor McGregor vs. Dustin Poirier.
However, he will now face the Kazakh fighter three days earlier on January 20, as per MMA Junkie.
Nurmagomedov is finally set to make his UFC debut after seeing previous bookings fall through for a number of reasons.
His first Octagon appearance was scheduled to take place last April against Hunter Azure at UFC 249 but was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The 25-year-old then withdrew from his bout with Nathaniel Wood in July following the death of his uncle and coach, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, Khabib’s father.
Nurmagomedov was then forced to withdraw from October’s scheduled bout with Morozov at UFC 254 due to a staph infection.
The fight being moved to an earlier date decreases the chances of Khabib Nurmagomedov coming face-to-face with McGregor at the Emirates Arena on January 23.
‘The Eagle’ announced his retirement after beating Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 in October, stepping away from the Octagon with a 29-0 record.
However, UFC President Dana White recently revealed that he plans to try and persuade Nurmagomedov to return to the ring.
“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.
“I think he should fight again and I’m going to press him as hard as I can for one more.”