KHABIB NURMAGOMEDOV retired from the UFC last night having lost just two rounds in his entire career.
The Dagestani grappler finished interim lightweight champion Justin Gaethje with a triangle choke one minute and 34 seconds into the second round of their Fight Island showdown.
Khabib, 32, then announced his shock retirement immediately after the victory, revealing that he promised his mother that he would not fight without the guidance of his father Abdulmanap, who passed away earlier this year.
Last night's win cemented his claim to the title of greatest mixed martial artist of all time, with many including UFC president Dana White believing him to be right among the best to ever do it.
The 29-0 star not only walks away having never lost a bout – but finishes without ever having even really been tested.
In fact, 'The Eagle' lost just two rounds in his entire career – with one of those coming last night against Gaethje.
'The Highlight', 31, was awarded a tight round one 10-9 by judges Sal D'Amato and Ben Cartlidge despite being taken down late on – although Derek Cleary scored it in Khabib's favour.
Nurmagomedov's only other round dropped was the third against Conor McGregor at UFC 229.
But the Russian was never truly in danger, submitting his Irish rival in the very next round.
With emotion pouring out following a tragic year on a personal level, Khabib shocked the world by announcing his retirement from the sport.
He told Jon Anik in the octagon: "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.”
He's the number one pound for pound fighter in the world, and seriously you gotta put him up there with GOAT status with whoever else who you think is the GOAT
And while disappointed at losing arguably his greatest champion, White, 51, oozed respect for Khabib when speaking after the fight.
He said: "He's the number one pound for pound fighter in the world, and seriously you gotta put him up there with GOAT status with whoever else who you think is the GOAT.”
Khabib's retirement has left the lightweight division wide open, with the likes of Gaethje, McGregor, Dustin Poirier and Tony Ferguson all likely to be in the mix.
McGregor is set to battle Poirier on January 23, but Gaethje has urged 'The Notorious' to ditch 'The Diamond' and fight him for the belt instead.
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.”
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