The latest word from lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov appears to be that there’s little chance that he his going to be able to fight Tony Ferguson in the main event of UFC 249 on April 18th due to ongoing issues with travel restrictions as the coronavirus pandemic continues to grind the world to a halt.
“I hear they are looking to organise it with or without me,” Nurmagomedov said on Instagram Live. “OK, go ahead.”
“I am even hearing that they are looking for an opponent for Tony, because he is in the States and I am here in Russia. But I am here not on my own will.”
“The UFC told me that this fight 100% isn’t happening in the USA, and even if it’s not happening in the Emirates it will happen on this side of Atlantic. We discussed everything with the UFC.
“Now I don’t really know what’s going on. It’s really hard to train and cut your weight when the whole world is locked down and you don’t know what you are preparing for. But it’s not the first time I face obstacles in my career.”
Overall it seems that while Khabib is still training, he is struggling to see a way in which the fight can still happen.
“Currently I am in Dagestan and I am training and preparing every day. Although I don’t know what am I preparing for. Because after we came to Russia we also learned that the borders are going to be locked.
“Same like in the States, same like in Europe, Emirates, everywhere. The whole world is in quarantine right now.”
If the fight is cancelled then it will be the fifth time that it’s being booked and then scrapped, though this would be the most painful of all given due to both fighter’s continued winning streaks during that time it’s now seen as potentially the most important title encounter in UFC lightweight history.