Arguably the greatest Russian heavyweight mixed martial artist of all time has thrown his weight behind Khabib Nurmagmoedv to become Russia’s first UFC champion.
Asked to offer his thoughts on the Dagestani lightweight’s difficult 2017 to-date, Fedor Emelianenko appeared positive that Nurmagomedov would overcome the weight-cutting blunder ahead of UFC 209 in Las Vegas.
"We have not seen Khabib since then,”Emelianenko, who was in attendance at the Russian amateur MMA championships last weekend as President of the Russian MMA Union, told Tass.ru’s Igor Lazorin.” But in the interview, I was asked about what happened. Different information is on the Internet, but, of course, we will support our fighters.”
This is not the first time that Emelianenko has shown support for the undefeated UFC lightweight. Last year, Emelianenko explained that “Khabib has long earned the right to fight for a title” and “should be given a chance” to fight Irish sensation Conor McGregor. While Nurmagomedov’s weight-cutting misstep likely delayed the young talent’s opportunity, Fedor remained hopeful that it only delayed the inevitable.
“I hope that he will become a champion in the future."