What’s Next for Khabibi Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor After Their Suspenions/Fines?

Don’t Expect to See Either Fighter in the Cage Anytime Soon

Two of the biggest superstars in the UFC were disciplined for what took place after their fight at UFC 229 today.

Lightweight champion Khabibi Nurmagomedov was suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission for nine months and fined $500,000. Nurmagomedov’s suspension can be lowered to six months if he delivers a public service announcement on anti-bullying to the commission.

Photo: AP Photo/John Locher

Former lightweight champ Conor McGregor received a suspension of six months and a $50,000 fine. McGregor and Nurmagomedov both had different reactions to the suspensions.

Both of the suspensions are retroactive from their October 6th fight. It was one of the most anticipated fights in UFC history. Nurmagomedov dominated most the fight and submitted McGregor in the fourth round. Then Nurmagomedov jumped over the cage and attacked one of the coaches in McGregor’s corner.

Photo: AP

Members of Nurmagomedov’s team jumped in the octagon and exchanged punches with McGregor. Two of Nurmagomedov’s teammates involved were suspended for one year by the commission today as well.

So what’s next? McGregor can return as soon as April 6th and Nurmagomedov as soon as July 6th. But don’t expect the lightweight champion to return as soon as his suspension is over. ESPN’s Ariel Helwani reporting he may be out until the fall.

Looking ahead to the UFC’s schedule, they do have a pay-per-view event planned for April 13th, one week after McGregor’s suspension ends. Whether or not the UFC books the sport’s biggest star that soon after the suspension has yet to be determined. McGregor and fellow lightweight Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone (35-9-1) verbally agreed to fight via Twitter after Cerrone’s second-round TKO victory on the UFC’s debut card on ESPN earlier this month.

McGregor is such a big star, he’s most likely one victory away from a title shot. The lightweight division is the most talent-stacked in the UFC and other fighters deserve a title shot over McGregor, but none of them come close to the star-power McGregor possesses.

#1 Tony Ferguson (24-3) has won 11 fights in a row and is unlikely to wait for Nurmagomedov to return. The UFC is in in a tough spot because a rematch with McGregor and Nurmagomedov would be huge, but Ferguson is more deserving than McGregor for a title shot.

Photo: Gregory Payan/AP

There are also other deserving fighters atop the division like Dustin Poirier and Al Iaquinta who are one fight away from a title shot. Now that the suspensions have been handed out, it’s time for the UFC to start making fights in the lightweight division. Fans and fighters have been waiting to see how long McGregor and Nurmagomedov would be suspended for and it has held up the division.

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Greg LaFountain is from a small town in upstate New York called Peru. After graduating high school, Greg enlisted in the United States Marine Corps, serving his country for four years. After the Marines, Greg went to Pensacola State College where he got his Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice. He then moved to Tampa and enrolled at the University of South Florida where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications. Since graduating from USF, Greg interned with Bucs Blitz, covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Greg joined Genesis in the fall of 2016, covering Florida State Football, the NFL and the UFC.