Khabib Nurmagomedov opens up on mumps ordeal before UFC 254

Khabib Nurmagomedov opens up on mumps ordeal as lightweight king says his final UFC fight was under threat after spending five days in intensive care with disease… and Dagestani reveals photograph of seriously swollen HEAD while ill

  • Khabib Nurmagomedov has opened up on his mumps ordeal before UFC 254 
  • The Dagestani was hit by the virus and spent five days in intensive care 
  • Nurmagomedov, 32, recovered and defeated Justin Gaethje via submission
  • The lightweight king revealed a photo of himself with a badly swollen head 

Khabib Nurmagomedov was revealed a photograph of himself with a badly swollen head just weeks before his fight with Justin Gaethje after the Dagestani superstar was hit by a case of the mumps. 

The lightweight king came down with the illness a matter of weeks before his final UFC fight against former interim champion Gaethje on Fight Island at UFC 254. 

Nurmagomedov, 32, defied concerns that the bout would be called off and turned in one of his very best performances, stopping his American rival in the second round with a triangle submission.

Khabib NUrmagomedov has opened up on his mumps ordeal before fighting at UFC 254

Nurmagomedov, 32, put in a sensational performance to defend his lightweight title last year

UFC chief Dana White revealed Nurmagomedov’s ordeal after the fight, and now the Dagestani has opened up on his battle with the virus in an interview with Magomed Ismailov.     

‘I started feeling worse on the plane and when we arrive, I get a high fever,’ he said.

‘It was getting really bad and after a while, I was taken to the hospital, and I had intensive care for five days. It was really bad. 

However, the Dagestani was close to pulling out after suffering a bad case of the mumps

The undefeated star revealed a photograph of himself with a swollen head when he was unwell

‘After 10 days, I broke my thumb. I broke my thumb on October 7.’

The undefeated Dagestani revealed a photo of himself with a badly swollen head, adding: ‘I was having so much (to deal with) with this fight, the disease and fractures.

‘At the end of the day, we decided to keep the fight on.’

The virus spread throughout Nurmagomedov’s training camp, with cousin Umar contracting the disease before his UFC debut in January.  

Nurmagomedov also suffered from fractures and had plenty to handle before the fight

Nurmagomedov defeated Justin Gaethje before retiring from the sport on Fight Island

‘A whole bunch of fighters got the mumps,’ Nurmagomedov’s coach, Javier Mendez, told The Sun. ‘Islam Makhachev got the mumps. When we went to Vegas he got it.

‘I guess it lingers, right? Like you don’t get it right away. Sometimes you get it a month later or a week later. A lot of the fighters got annihilated.

‘It destroyed a lot of these guy’s fights. So yeah, that’s what happened to Umar, is the mumps.’

Nurmagomedov has shown no intention of returning to the octagon since retiring last October, with White disclosing that the Dagestani feels none of his lightweight rivals are anywhere near his ‘level’.  

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