The recently retired Khabib Nurmagomedov, who is widely regarded as the top pound-for-pound fighter in mixed martial arts, lashed out in the aftermath of Conor McGregor's knockout loss at the hands of Dustin Poirier in their rematch at UFC 257.
Nurmagomedov still currently holds the UFC lightweight title despite retiring after UFC 254.
He took to social media to slam his longtime rival McGregor, who Khabib chocked out back in 2018.
"This is what [happens], when you change your team, leave the sparring partners who made you a champion and sparring with little kids, far away from reality," Khabib stated.
McGregor had been chasing a rematch with Khabib, who doesn't have any interest, at the moment, in fighting again.
UFC President Dana White recently spoke to him, with Khabib brushing off any talk of a comeback.
“He said to me, ‘Dana, be honest with yourself,’” White said. “‘I’m so many levels above these guys. I beat these guys. But it doesn’t sound very positive, so we’ll see. But what I said before – he won’t hold the division up.”
Khabib has received offers as high as $100 million to have a boxing match in the Middle East - and he walked away from those proposals.
McGregor had been chasing after a boxing match with eight division world champion Manny Pacquiao. The two athletes are represented by the same management company, with actual discussions taking place behind the scenes.
Their mutual manager had confidence in a deal being reached for a 2021 pay-per-view showdown. Given McGregor's crushing defeat, that scenario is no longer on the table.
McGregor made his pro boxing debut in August of 2017, when he was stopped in ten rounds by Floyd Mayweather at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.