Time has clearly not healed the bad blood between Khabib Nurmagomedov and UFC rival Conor McGregor.
Khabib Nurmagomedov said he has the utmost respect for his beaten UFC 242 opponent Dustin Poirier, while taking a shot at fierce rival Conor McGregor.
The lightweight champion remained undefeated (28-0-0) with his third-round rear naked choke of Poirier (25-6, 1 NC) on Saturday.
After the fight, Nurmagomedov paid tribute to Poirier, but the goodwill certainly did not extend towards McGregor – who he defeated at UFC 229 in a bout marred by an ugly post-fight brawl.
Nurmagomedov wore a t-shirt in the ring and said he would be selling it and giving all of the proceeds to Poirier and his family.
“Why I wear this t-shirt, I know that’s going to go to a lot of charity stuff, guys, make sure I’m going to sell this t-shirt, all this money I’m going to send Dustin Poirier,” he said.
“This is what I want, you know, and why we have so much respect between us before the fight than my last fight? You know [McGregor] was a b******* guy, I have to work [with] a lot of crazy stuff, but I want to forget everything.
“We show really what is MMA. MMA’s number one thing is respect. When you come [to the] gym, the first thing what your coach, everybody teaches you, hey, you have to respect the gym, you have to respect team-mates, coaches, you have to clean your gym, everything’s about respect.
“MMA’s not about trash talking, you know, this is what we show it with, that’s important.”
Nurmagomedov was fighting for the first time since serving a nine-month suspension for his actions after his victory over McGregor, with the duo having been involved in an ill-tempered build-up.
The champion scaled the cage after his win and got into a fight with McGregor’s training partner Dillon Danis which then incited a brawl that went from the stands and into the ring.