UFC Lightweight king Khabib Nurmagomedov (28-0) is quite possibly one of the greatest combat sports athletes of all-time. The Russian champion wears his heart on his sleeve, and anyone who paid attention to his UFC career knows that has been a blessing. Don't talk if you can't back it up, and the 32-year-old has certainly backed it up. Much of the credit for where he is as a fighter and a man can be attributed to his father, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov. Sadly, he passed away earlier this year from COVID-related issues. Ahead of this Saturday's title unification bout against Justin Gaethje (22-2), Khabib posted a very moving animated tribute to his father, which you can see down below.
UFC 254 Will Be Emotional For Khabib Nurmagomedov
The champ recently sat with Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports and had this to say about his father and how he should keep his mind on fighting and not on the business side of things: "This is like father philosophy. Even if you champion, even if you black belt, even if you have gold belt, you can't be boss. You can never be boss. When you keep competition doesn't matter, like where you compete. Even if you compete high-level, you need boss. You have to be with your coach, you have to be with your father. Like my father for me was like coach, brother, friend, you know like everything. He never let me be a boss. He say when you become boss you're going to lose. This is very dangerous thing. You have to stay in your mind white belt always. You have to learn always."
Khabib Nurmagomedov tries to stay undefeated this Saturday at UFC 254 against Interim Lightweight Champion Justin Gaethje in a highly anticipated title unification bout.