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Dagestani fighter hospitalizes senior official over questionable decision

Welterweight Gadzhimurad Khiramagomedov is facing a lifetime ban following his attack on the Vice President of the Russian MMA Union. 

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On May 19, welterweight Gadzhimurad Khiramagomedov suffered a split decision to Georgiy Kichigin on the Fight Night Global 65 event in in Astana, Kazakhstan – a loss that prompted the Dagestani fighter to assault the vice president of the Russian MMA Union and hospitalize him with several broken bones.

Shortly following the Fight Night 65 event, Khiramagomedov, 25, visited the vice-president of the Russian MMA Union, Radmir Gabdullin, and assaulted the high-ranking official in his own hotel room. According to security camera footage captured ahead of the attack, Khiramagomedov was accompanied by his brother when he confronted Gabdullin. The two brothers reportedly attacked the official during a tense conversation, leaving him in need of medical attention.

Gabdullin was hospitalized with a severely broken jaw and a concussion while Khiramagomedov was arrested by the authorities in Astana. He was later released and allowed to return to Moscow. "Now I'm home and I plan to spend time with my family,” he told MatchTV. “I do not want to say anything, understand?"

Naturally, Khiramagomedov’s actions came with series of consequences; Fight Nights owner Kamil Gadzhiev revealed that the promotion will “no longer work with” Khiramagomedov because his actions “went beyond the sport.” The Russian MMA Union later released an official statement which confirmed that “sanctions would be applied to both athletes.”

Fedor Emelianenko, the incumbent President of the Russian MMA Union, also shared his thoughts on the Khiramagomedov brothers and their potential punishment: "The actions of the Khiramagomedov brothers was done surreptitiously and in a way not worthy of athletes representing their homeland in international events. The Union is dealing with the incident. I will personally monitor the situation. On Saturday, I will meet the ethical committee. Now I can say with confidence that none of the athletes involved in the incident will take part in another tournament held under the auspices of the Russian MMA Union."

According to reports, Khiramagomedov’s assault on a senior official contradicted his reputation as a calm and intelligent fighter. The fighter holds a 5-2 professional record and an amateur resume that includes two world championships. Yet according to Khiramagomedov’s coach, Magomed Kadiev, there has “long been an internal conflict” between the Russian MMA Union VP and Khiramagomedov. Gabdullin has denied any such history with Khiramagomedov or involvement in the decisionmaking process in his fight.

"There is no internal dispute or personal conflict with Gadzhimurad Khiramagomedov,” Gabdullin said. “Blow came unexpectedly during a quiet conversation in the hotel room. The main claim of the attackers was the judging decision in the fight between Khiramagomedov and Kichigin, which I did not judge."

Watch the controversial Khiramagomedov vs. Kichigin bout below:

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