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UFC legend Conor McGregor calls Khabib Nurmagomedov the ‘current’ best in the world

UFC, Conor McGregor, Khabib Nurmagomedov

They may have had their differences in the past, but it seems as if Conor McGregor now respects his UFC rival in the recently retired Khabib Nurmagomedov. 

McGregor revealed as much in a Twitter Q&A:

Responding to a fan who asked for his thoughts about Nurmagomedov, the longest reigning UFC lightweight champion who retired last week after beating Justin Gaethje at UFC 254, McGregor acknowledged “The Eagle” as a phenomenal grappler fighter and the best in the sport.

These comments and comments made after UFC 254 mark a departure for the 32-year-old McGregor, a former UFC feather and lightweight champion, who has belittled Nurmagomedov’s dominant run in the past while also hurling insults at his religion and family.  

In the lead-up to their much-anticipated fight for the lightweight title at UFC 229, McGregor and Nurmagomedov went back and forth, with issues such as religion, family, and politics also being brought up. 

It was the 32-year-old Nurmagomedov who emerged victorious in the Octagon on fight night, beating McGregor via submission in the fourth round before a post-match incident resulted in punches being thrown on both sides.

McGregor’s replies to his fans also offered an insight about his plans for the future, such as what he plans to do to his possible next opponent in Dustin Poirier, who he previously defeated via first round TKO at UFC 178:

Aside from revealing his opinion on fellow UFC fighters Nate Diaz and Tony Ferguson, the Irishman said that he is in a tremendous space right now and that he is excited for his next fight. Whether he faces Poirier or a different opponent, this raises the possibility that McGregor could soon return to the Octagon after his last fight in January, which was a first-round victory over Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone at UFC 246.