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Dublin: 6 °C Thursday 24 January, 2019

Dana White dismisses claim UFC should shoulder blame for Khabib's actions

UFC’s promotional videos should not have influenced Khabib Nurmagomedov’s actions after beating Conor McGregor, says president Dana White.

UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov
UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov

DANA WHITE DISMISSED claims from Khabib Nurmagomedov’s camp that UFC’s promotional material contributed to the chaotic nature of the fight with Conor McGregor.

Nurmagomedov defeated McGregor in Las Vegas on Saturday to defend his lightweight title, but the fight was marred by the incidents that followed as the Russian left the cage in the direction of his opponent’s stable-mate Dillon Danis, prompting a melee while the beaten fighter tussled with others in the octagon.

Ali Abdelaziz, the champion’s manager, suggested the UFC had encouraged a feud between the pair in order to boost sales, allowing McGregor to rile Nurmagomedov.

UFC president White is not interested in the excuse, though, pointing out that plenty of other opponents have had “bad blood” without igniting mayhem outside the cage.

“That’s the dumbest quote I’ve heard in my entire life,” White told ESPN’s First Take upon hearing Abdelaziz’s comments. “You’re an idiot, whoever wrote that.

“This is a fight and the way that we promoted this fight was exactly the way that this thing played out. That’s all part of the storyline.

“Believe me – almost 20 years, I’ve been doing this – we’ve had tons of fights where there has been bad blood and all kinds of things like this happen. We don’t have fights after the fights.

“We have scuffles with guys in the back. This is the fight business and a lot of people don’t like each other. That’s just a stupid opinion.”

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