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MMA Legend Khabib Nurmagomedov Calls UFC Octagon Girls 'Useless'

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MMA Legend Khabib Nurmagomedov Calls UFC Octagon Girls 'Useless'

Khabib Nurmagomedov has unloaded on the UFC's octagon girls, calling them "the most unnecessary people in martial arts".

Ring or octagon girls have existed for decades now within both MMA and boxing, although their roles have come under fire in recent times.

UFC octagon girl Arianny Celeste. Credit: PA
UFC octagon girl Arianny Celeste. Credit: PA

Some critics believe the idea of having attractive women hold up cardboard cutouts between each round is outdated and even objectifying, while other fans appear to like it.

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Either way, the octagon girls seem to have caused quite a stir over the past few years and one person who isn't their biggest fan is former UFC lightweight champion Khabib.

Speaking at a recent press conference, the retired legend said: "Look, I don't want to offend anyone. Ring girls are the most unnecessary people in martial arts.

"What is their function? I have a question: You can show that it's the second round on the screen.

"I think they're the most useless people in martial arts. What function? How?

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"Do they develop the sport? Or do they help people to see that it is the second round now? What are they doing? Tell me, please."

Khabib chokes out Dustin Poirier. Credit: PA
Khabib chokes out Dustin Poirier. Credit: PA

Khabib, who is a devout Muslim, decided to hang up the gloves back in 2020, finishing his decorated mixed martial arts career with a perfect, unblemished record of 29 wins and zero losses.

The Russian fan favourite started his professional MMA journey all the way back in 2008, so his 12-year career as a fighter means he definitely would have bumped into a fair few octagon girls throughout his time.

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But even when a reporter at the press conference implied that ring or octagon girls have been a tradition in combat sports for decades now, Khabib still wasn't having a bar of it.

"I realise that this is history. History knows many mistakes. We read history to avoid mistakes of the past in the future," he added.

"If we look at history, it says they are useless. That is my personal opinion.

"Dana White maybe likes it, maybe you do too. But my name is not Dana, my name is Khabib.

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"For example, I sit with my father, every person has his own preferences, cultures and values. I come to fight night and sit with my father and those people are passing by and showing people that it is the second round.

"But no one looks at the sign. I feel uncomfortable with my father.

"If you want you can do it. But don't impose it to me. Do it aside. There are designated places for it.

"I think we must not mix all of it. This is my private opinion. We develop sport here, first of all."

Featured Image Credit: PA/Twitter/@brittneypalmer

Topics: Khabib Nurmagomedov, UFC, Australia, MMA, Dana White

Max Sherry
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