UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov has declined an offer by the Nevada Athletic Commission to have three months cut off his suspension. Nurmagomedov could have had his punishment cut from nine months to six by putting out an anti-bullying public service announcement, but the unbeaten fighter believes the state of Nevada has more issues to worry about.
"The state of Nevada is where drugs, prostitution and gambling are officially permitted," he said in an interview with Sportbox.ru, a Russian-based website. "Let them work on themselves."
Nurmagomedov, along with Conor McGregor, were both fined and suspended by the NAC for their involvements in an altercation after UFC 229 where the champion stormed out of the Octagon after submitting McGregor and attacked members of his fight team. Nurmagomedov was fined $500,000.
"There were fighters who hadn't fought for two years and hadn't taken a belt from them for a year-and-a-half," Nurmagomedov said. "I am ready to fight. It was (the NAC) who removed me."
As for his immediate future, Nurmagomedov believes the UFC will move to crown an interim champion with Dustin Poirier and Tony Ferguson squaring off, adding that he sees himself facing the winner "at the end of the year I think this can happen."