UFC 254 LIVE REACTION: Khabib RETIRES after epic win, McGregor response, champ ‘BROKE his foot and toes’ WEEKS ago – The Sun

KHABIB NURMAGOMEDOV demolished Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 – before sensationally retiring from MMA.

Khabib went 29-0 and after paying an emotional tribute to his late father will now call it a day from the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

And in a twist, UFC boss Dana White has shockingly revealed the unbeaten star had suffered a "broken foot and broken toes" just THREE weeks ago.

Follow ALL of the reaction below…

  • Justin Lawrence

    TIGHT VICTORY

    Khabib Nurmagomedov left the MMA in style on Saturday night by defeating Justin Gaethje.

    Despite his victory it turns out that Gaethje actually won the first round of the match-up.

    Judges Ben Cartlidge and Sal D’Amato both scored the round 10-9 to Gaethje while Derek Cleary scored it 10-9 to Khabib.

  • Justin Lawrence

    GAETHJE GAUNTLET

    Justin Gaethje has called out Conor McGregor after Khabib Nurmagomedov's shock MMA retirement left the lightweight title vacant.

    Gaethje lost to Khabib at UFC 254 on Fight Island, but has already set his sights on fighting McGregor.

    He said: “Poirier and McGregor are going to fight. They haven't made it official, so if McGregor wants to bounce out and get the belt, then I'm right here.”

  • Justin Lawrence

    THE GOAT

    Jon Jones has insisted that he’s the UFC GOAT and not Khabib Nurmagomedov.

    Khabib has left the sport after winning the UFC lightweight title once again against Justin Gaethje at UFC 254.

    But Jones believes that with all his title defences, he is the best despite failing numerous drug tests.

    He tweeted: “15 world titles, numbers don’t lie. Not salty at all, I really do respect Khabib, I honour the type of man he is. But being the best is earned not given”

  • Richard Forrester

    EYE SPY

    Elsewhere on the night, Robert Whittaker moved closer to a rematch with Israel Adesanya after outsmarting Jared Cannonier over three rounds.

    Whittaker, who lost the belt to Adesanya last year, got the judges verdict – his second on Fight Island.

    But look at the state of Cannonier's right eye…

  • Richard Forrester

    ROCK N' ROLL

    Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson showed his dedication to his training by missing Khabib's famous win.

    The actor and former wrestler controversially sacrificed watching the scrap for the gym.

    He tweeted: ” Gotta crush this training session now but ufc254 just started. 2pm fights threw me off dammit

    “Best of luck to all the fighters and put on a great show! Training comes first.. checking my phone for updates.”

  • Jim Sheridan

    CLOSE QUARTERS

    There's fine margins in the UFC – and so it proved last night.

    The judges had Gaethje AHEAD when Khabib stopped his opponent in spectacular fashion in the second round.

  • Jim Sheridan

    A TRUE GREAT

    The world is waking up this morning to the news that Khabib Nurmagomedov has fought his last fight in the UFC Octagon.

    He dedicated the second round demolition job of Justin Gaethje to his late father – and wants to be placed atop the pound-for-pound ranking list.

  • James Orr

    KHABIB'S SPEECH

    Khabib's post-fight speech from inside the Octagon as he announced his retirement…

    “Today, I want to say this is my last fight.

    “When UFC called me about Justin, I spoke with my mother and I said I wouldn't fight without father.

    “And if I give my word, then I must follow it. UFC must make me No1 pound for pound fighter in the world, because I deserve it.

    “I want to say thank you to Lorenzo and Dana.

    “All this UFC team, everybody, they made a great show.

    “Thank you to Justin, thank you brother. I know how you take care of your people.

    “One day something will happen for you, you never know what is going to happen tomorrow.

    “Today is my last fight here in the UFC.”

  • James Orr

    McGREGOR'S MESSAGE

    Khabib's former foe Conor McGregor was quick to send on a message to the Russian star after he announced his retirement last night.

    And in his message McGregor also confirmed he is not retired too. Notorious is expected to face Dustin Poirier early next year.

  • Gary Stonehouse

    'NUMBERS DON'T LIE'

    Jon Jones has rejected Khabib Nurmagomedov’s claim he is the best pound-for-pound fighter.

    The UFC lightweight champion stretched his unbeaten record as a pro to 29-0 in MMA on Saturday night with victory over Justin Gaethje.

    Many felt it was ‘The Eagle’s’ biggest test yet as he took on the American at UFC 254 on Fight Island.

    But the Dagestani fighter left everyone in no doubt who the top dog was as he needed less than ten minutes to see off the man dubbed ‘The Highlight’.

    Khabib, 32, shocked everybody afterwards by announcing his retirement from MMA.

    That is despite him being linked with mega-money matches against old foe Conor McGregor or his hero Georges St. Pierre.

    Inside the octagon after his latest win, he said: “There is only one thing I want from UFC, to put me as No.1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world because I deserve it

    However, the current P4P king Jones quickly refuted Khabib’s request.

    Writing on Twitter, he wrote: “Until I take that heavily crown, I grant you the spot. Enjoy Champ.”

    He then tweeted: “15 world titles, numbers don't lie.”

    ‘Bones’ then wrote: “I want to congratulate Khabib for an outstanding career.

    “I know he made his father along with millions of fans around the world incredibly proud today.

    “May God continue to bless him on his journey.”

    The American then added: “Definitely a powerful moment, but my logic is definitely not clouded.”

  • James Orr

    NURM THE PAIN

    Khabib pleaded 'be close to your parents' as he paid tribute to his late father after his win over Justin Gaethje.

    The undefeated Russian submitted his opponent by triangle choke in the second round of their lightweight bout on Fight Island.It was Khabib's first fight since the death of his father and trainer, Abdulmanap, in July.

    After his sensational victory, he dropped to the ground in tears before he announced his retirement.

    And speaking to Gaethje after the fight, he urged the American to cherish his parents.

    He said: “Thank you so much Justin. In 2016 I remember, when I cut weight, you helped me a lot. Thank you brother.

    “I know you're a great man and I know how you take care of your close people.

    “I know lots of things about you.

    “Be close to your parents because one day it's going to happen.

    “You never know what's going to happen tomorrow, you never know.”

  • James Orr

    JUST-IN TIME

    Justin Gaethje has revealed what he said to Khabib Nurmagomedov in the octagon after his loss.

    The American, 31, was choked out in the second round of the lightweight showdown on Fight Island.

    After his win, Khabib dropped to the ground in tears before he announced his retirement.

    Gaethje consoled the Russian in the middle of the octagon just moments after he had regained consciousness.

    And the 31-year-old told his opponent he was sorry for the loss of his father who sadly passed away in July.

    He said: “I haven't had a chance to tell you, but I'm so sorry for your loss. You've just made your father very proud.”

  • Gary Stonehouse

    NEWS JUST IN

    Justin Gaethje has spoken to the media after his loss to Khabib Nurmagomedoc.

    ‘The Highlight’ said: “I felt alive, that's why I stepped in here man.

    “My endorphins have been released. Khabib did what he had to do.

    “He made his father so proud.

    “I fight for a living, the best thing about being choked out is that there's nothing consequential to your health.

    “I said I had five wars left and I haven't had one since I said that.

    “Six to eight weeks I want to fight again.”

  • James Orr

    PERFORMANCE OF THE NIGHT

    Magomed Ankalaev picked up an extra $50k and shared the award with Khabib for his destruction Ion Cutelaba. 

    He floored Cutelaba with a punch early and kept him there with solid ground and pound.

    And he claimed the win via TKO in the final seconds of the first.

  • James Orr

    PERFORMANCE OF THE NIGHT

    Khabib Nurmagomedov earned an extra $50k for his stunning second round victory over Gaethje. 

    Despite what he says, hopefully this is not the last we have seen of ‘The Eagle’ in the octagon.

  • James Orr

    FIGHT OF THE NIGHT

    Both Nathaniel Wood and Casey Kenney pocketed an extra $50k for their thrilling war.

    Their showdown took place on the prelims.

    And after an entertaining showdown, it was Wood who got the decision via the judges.

  • James Orr

    BONUS BOOST

    Dana White has revealed the bonuses for UFC 254 – and Khabib Nurmagomedov was one of those to walk out forty grand richer.

    The latest UFC pay-per-view extravaganza from the Middle East took place on Fight Island on Saturday night.

  • James Orr

    KHABIB SPEAKS

    Khabib has just posted on Instagram alongside a picture of his late father Abdulmanap.

    He wrote: “When ALLAH with you, nobody can broke you, nobody.

    “Thanks Father for everything, you teach all my life, may ALLAH grant you the highest Paradise.”

  • James Orr

    SCORECARDS

    Justin Gaethje was WINNING on UFC 254 scorecards before Khabib Nurmagomedov submitted him with triangle choke

  • James Orr

    RONALDO TRIBUTE

    Cristiano Ronaldo has paid tribute to Khabib following his retirement following the main event of UFC 254.

    Juventus superstar Ronaldo wrote on Instagram: “Congrats bro! Your father is proud of you.”

  • James Orr

    TOE WAY

    Dana White's post-fight revelation that Khabib had suffered two broken toes and a bone in his foot just THREE weeks ago.

    The UFC president said: “We are all lucky that we got to see him fight tonight because apparently he was in the hospital with a broken foot three weeks ago.

    “I think he has two broken toes and a bone in his foot broken, that’s what his corner told me.

    “He never told anyone, was just walking around as normal, he is one of the toughest human beings on the planet.

  • [email protected]

    RECORD-SETTER

    Khabib retires with a perfect, unblemished MMA record, and a bunch of other records too.

  • [email protected]

    HISTORY

    Khabib made it to second place in this storied list of fighters.

  • [email protected]

    ROGAN HAILS KHABIB

    Joe Rogan has posted on Instagram that Khabib is the GOAT.

  • [email protected]

    DIAZ SPEAKS

    Nate Diaz has comically had his say on Khabib's retirement following his UFC 254 win over Justin Gaethje.

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