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30 Mar, 2020 12:00

'Cursed!' Fight fans react as Khabib Nurmagomedov says Tony Ferguson superfight looks set to be postponed for FIFTH time

'Cursed!' Fight fans react as Khabib Nurmagomedov says Tony Ferguson superfight looks set to be postponed for FIFTH time

The highly anticipated showdown between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson looks set to be postponed for a FIFTH time after the Russian said that the UFC is seeking a new opponent for Ferguson amid Russian travel restrictions.

The UFC lightweight champion stated on an Instagram Live video on Monday that he left his training base at American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose, California to return to Russia after being informed by the UFC that the UFC 249 clash – originally scheduled for Brooklyn next month – would now likely take place outside of the United States due to the developing coronavirus situation. 

Also on rt.com Frozen out: Khabib Nurmagomedov says he's stuck in Russia and UFC 249 could move on WITHOUT HIM

He says that he flew to Abu Dhabi, where he was informed that the fight was likely to take place, before swiftly returning home upon learning that the United Arab Emirates would be closing their borders and restricting movement in and out of the country for non-nationals. 

Due to recently-introduced restrictions on movement in Russia to help curb the spread of COVID-19, Nurmagomedov – who is in Dagestan at the moment – says that he is unable to leave the country for the time being, and even suggested that the UFC are in the process of trying to find a new opponent for Ferguson for a potential fight in the United States.

Neither the UFC nor Dana White have commented on the situation as of yet, but if the fight fans have begun grappling with the idea of the fight which is years in the making once again falling into matchmaking limbo.

Any cancelation of the fight, temporary or otherwise, would mark an incredible FIFTH time that a clash between the two 155lb standouts has fallen to the wayside after both men pulled out of previously scheduled bouts on two prior occasions. 

Nurmagomedov was due to make his first title defence since last September's submission win against Dustin Poirier but with him set to observe Ramadan in the coming months, it could well be September or so before the Russian is once again ready to defend his championship.