Khabib Nurmagomedov showed his humble nature after talks about easily defeating Israel Adesanya

Khabib Nurmagomedov once heaped praise on Israel Adesanya when asked whether or not he’d have successfully defeated the middleweight champion.

Nurmagomedov is widely considered one of the greatest MMA fighters of all time, evidenced by his stunning 29-0 record. ‘The Eagle’ called time on his career in 2020 as the lightweight champion, successfully submitting Justin Gaethje before hanging up his gloves.

The Russian fighter’s decision to retire from the octagon at just of 31 years old has meant fans have often had to theorize how Nurmagomedov would have done in dream matchups.

One such opponent was Israel Adesanya who Khabib Nurmagomedov’s manager, Ali Abdelaziz, claimed he could have defeated.

Khabib Nurmagomedov was then asked about his chances against Adesanya during his UFC Hall of Fame induction night last year. ‘The Eagle’ immediately laughed off the question before praising Adesanya’s dominance at 185 pounds. He said:

“I’m not gonna fight him [Israel Adesanya] at 185 pounds. I’m not gonna fight with him. Right now this is his time. Dont take away his greatness, you know? How many years is he middleweight champion? Three? four? I think he deserves some respect. Don’t treat him like this by saying some lightweight can beat him easily. “

He added:

“If we wants to grapple, we can grapple, you know. In the gym. Like I did lately with all these heavyweights, light heavyweights, middleweights. People talk about this, I didn’t say this [about defeating Adesanya].”

Catch Nurmagomedov’s comments here:

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