In an interview with Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, Tony Ferguson proposed a season of the Ultimate Fighter, headlined by himself and his former arch-nemesis Khabib Nurmagomedov acting as coaches. The idea gained widespread acceptance in the MMA community as the best way to settle a long-standing rivalry for a fight that was canceled 5 times for a variety of reasons including a global pandemic.
In an interview with The Schmo, Khabib Nurmagomedov’s manager, Ali Abdelaziz confirmed Khabib’s willingness to accept the offer saying, “He (Khabib) said Hey maybe me and him can do the Ultimate fighter as coaches for the UFC, if the UFC don’t do it maybe we can do it here” a proposal similar to Khabib’s who offered to make it happen under the Eagle FC Banner.
Ali said, Khabib’s willingness to accept the fight was a little “Shocking” for him despite how fun the ordeal can be. He said, “It’s about having them coach together at the ultimate fighter but it was shocking for me because this guy (Tony) is a little bit stupid so there would be a lot of drama” However he wished to comply with the needs of his client, saying “Khabib wants the smoke” promising to be at his side as an assistant coach if the deal goes through.
Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov agree to coach in The Ultimate Fighter, argue about specifics
The whole idea sprung up on Ariel Helwani’s show when Tony Ferguson featured as a guest. Tony said, “The best man wins on the team.I guarantee my coaching is better than yours Khabib” Ferguson seemed to imply that no matter what the challenge bestowed upon them during the show, Khabib would be bested at it. About finding closure by coaching against Khabib Tony said, “It would be cool to go out there shake the dude’s hand, squash some beef, and move on”
Khabib who saw the interview responded via Twitter saying he likes the idea of coaching against Ferguson and that he’s willing to do it under his promotion, Eagle FC’s banner. This tweak to the proposal didn’t sit well with Ferguson who replied to the tweet calling Khabib his designated nickname, “Fathead” pointing out that he’s a private contractor who isn’t allowed to explore his options with other leagues.
Tony got his start in the UFC through the Ultimate Fighter when he won the 13th season of the show under the tutelage of Brock Lesnar. Tony had finished all his opponents in the house including his finals bout against Ramsey Nijem