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Manager: Khabib wanted Gaethje to fight Conor McGregor, ‘Justin said no’

According to Ali Abdelaziz, Khabib Nurmagomedov wanted Justin Gaethje to fight Conor McGregor, an offer that was turned down.

Khabib Nurmagomedov’s return remains up in the air, at this point. That also leaves interim champion Justin Gaethje hanging in the air, as far as his title shot goes.

In a recent conversation with TMZ Sports, their manager Ali Abdelaziz recently declared Khabib vs. Gaethje a certainty for 2020. In that same interview, Abdelaziz also revealed that “The Eagle” wanted Gaethje to take on another major fight instead of waiting in ambiguity.

“Khabib told me to tell Justin to go fight Conor. Justin said no,” Abdelaiziz said (transcript by MMA Mania).

“Conor, right now, he can be a back up fighter, he can go make weight and maybe he can make some money. Conor, he can go fight Nate, fight Masvidal. We’re not interested in fighting him.”

Abdelaziz had actually plotted McGregor’s path to a Khabib rematch.

“He needs to get some wins and he needs to fight some good opponents,” Abdelaziz said. “I said the only way he fights Khabib is if he fights Islam Makhachev. Then Khabib will fight him.”

UFC president Dana White expects McGregor to be back in 2021. But as of right now, it looks like “The Notorious” is pretty satisfied with retirement life.