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Nurmagomedov, 32, submitted Gaethje in the second round of their UFC championship clash.
And 'The Eagle' called time on his glittering career following his 29th professional victory.
Speaking to Jon Anik inside the Octagon, he said: "Today I want to say this is my last fight.
"No way am I coming here without my father. When UFC comes to me about Justin [Gaethje] I spoke with my mother for three days.
"She didn't want me to fight without my father. I promised to her this was going to be my last fight and if I give her my word, I have to follow through with this.
"There is only one thing I want from UFC, to put me as No 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world because I deserve it."
"This is my last fight."@TeamKhabib pays his respects following a dominant performance at #UFC254 pic.twitter.com/5HiUvJXBJC
- UFC (@ufc) October 24, 2020
BREAKING: Khabib Nurmagomedov announces his retirement from MMA. #UFC254 pic.twitter.com/JtLGvh36ds
- UFC on BT Sport (@btsportufc) October 24, 2020
Nurmagomedov's emotional decision to walk away from the UFC comes after his father and trainer Abdulmanap sadly passed away due to complications of COVID-19.
The Russian superstar retires from MMA having never lost a fight and boasting victories over the likes of Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor, among others.
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