Daniel Cormier Drops Bombshell Claim Over Khabib Nurmagomedov’s UFC Future
Khabib, 31, hasn't fought since last September when he defeated Dustin Poirier and successfully defended and unified the UFC lightweight championship.
The 'Eagle' was scheduled to face fierce rival Tony Ferguson back in April at UFC 249, but he was unable to fly out for the event due to the coronavirus pandemic.
And Khabib faced further heartbreak earlier this month after his father, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, passed away as a result of coronavirus complications.
Cormier, who is close pals with Khabib, is not sure that the undefeated Russian star will face interim UFC lightweight champ Justin Gaethje before the year is out.
"I don't think he's fighting this year, honestly," the 41-year-old UFC star said on ESPN.
"And it's going to take a lot of strength from a very strong man for Khabib to be back in the octagon, ever, I think."
More Like ThisMore Like This
Cormier, who returns to action next month against Stipe Miocic, went on to explain the close bond Khabib shared with his father and how Abdulmanap's death could have a profound impact on his UFC future.
"I just know what Abdulmanap meant to him, I know that this was their journey together," 'DC' said.
"I hope he fights, but I don't know. Like I said, he's going to have to muster up a lot of strength for an already strong person to go out there and do it.
"And if he does, I just don't know how long he'll be around. Maybe [Khabib] fights and honours his father with another massive and unbelievable performance.
"But, I look back at his fight in September and when he won, the way his dad reacted it almost like you saw the video when his dad reacts after he won against Dustin Poirier, and it was almost like his spirit was filled with joy watching his kid do that. I'm just happy they got to share that together."
Khabib's manager, Ali Abdelaziz, has insisted that the 'Eagle' will return to UFC before the end of 2020 to face Gaethje in a title fight.
Featured Image Credit: PA/ESPN