Sports

What the Hell Happened at the Conor McGregor-Khabib Nurmagomedov UFC Fight?

LAS VEGAS, NV - OCTOBER 06:  Khabib Nurmagomedov of Russia is escorted out of the arena after defeating Conor McGregor of Ireland in their UFC lightweight championship bout during the UFC 229 event inside T-Mobile Arena on October 6, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Police escort Khabib Nurmagomedov out of T-Mobile Arena after a wild brawl.
Harry How/Getty Images

Khabib Nurmagomedov defeated Conor McGregor at Saturday’s UFC 229 (or “Ultimate Fighting Championship Two Hundred and Twenty Nine,” for those of us who appreciate formality). It was an anticipated result, and the favored Nurmagomedov assumed control throughout most of the fight. What happened after McGregor tapped out in the fourth round was not anticipated, however. Upon dispatching his opponent in the octagon, Nurmagomedov pointed at a member of McGregor’s team in the crowd, leapt from the cage, and attacked him. Then, things really got crazy. What the hell happened?

Was it a good fight?

While McGregor is perhaps the sport’s biggest star, Nurmagomedov was expected to ground him into the mat. He did, though it took four rounds before Nurmagomedov executed the rear-naked choke that made McGregor submit.

Who did Nurmagomedov go after in the crowd?

Soon after his opponent submitted, Nurmagomedov pointed at Dillon Danis, McGregor’s jiu-jitsu coach and a vocal member of his crew. The Russian fighter then threw his mouthguard in his direction and scaled the cage as security floundered to contain him. Video shows Nurmagomedov’s attempt to land directly on Danis, and the melee spread through the first few rows of Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena.

How did he have the energy to fight another guy after fighting McGregor?

Beats me. Green tea, perhaps?

What was going on inside the octagon while this was happening?

The cage, it turns out, isn’t a very effective buffer. Two people who are reportedly part of Nurmagomedov’s crew hopped into the octagon, and one was seen punching McGregor in the back of the head before being restrained. Instagram user @semarroy posted video of the insanity from T-Mobile Arena.

What sparked the animosity between the two fighters?

McGregor is known for being brash, though his schtick leading up to the fight was brazenly offensive. In a pre-bout press conference, he called Nurmagomedov’s father a “quivering coward” for not killing Chechen dictator Ramzan Kadyrov. He also accused the fighter’s manager of being a “snitch terrorist rat” and claimed that he was somehow involved in 9/11. At an event in Brooklyn earlier this year, McGregor attacked a bus carrying UFC staff while looking for Nurmagomedov.

At Saturday’s post-fight presser, Nurmagomedov asked why people were focusing on his actions and not McGregor’s own behavior.

What’s going to happen next?

Three members of Nurmagomedov’s team were arrested after the melee. They were all released on Saturday night.

UFC president Dana White said he’s considering stripping Nurmagomedov’s lightweight championship title, and the Nevada State Athletic Commission is withholding the fighter’s check until they complete an investigation.

Was Drake somehow involved?

Of course.