Welcome to the first installment of a new feature here at WrestlingNews.co – a weekly roundup of the top stories from the world of Mixed Martial Arts, powered by MMANews.com. This week’s lead stories center around the announcement of Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Justin Gaethje, Dana White on a potential Khabib vs. GSP bout, and the incident between UFC color commentator Dan Hardy and referee Herb Dean. Let’s hop into this week’s roundup:
3.UFC Looking Into Incident Involving Dan Hardy & Herb Dean
As a color commentator, it’s important to call things how you see them. This has proven to be a difficult task inside empty arenas during the coronavirus pandemic. Fighters and officials can often hear what the commentators have to say, which usually isn’t the case with packed venues. This caused an incident between Dan Hardy and referee Herb Dean.
Dean had been criticized by Hardy and Paul Felder for what they believed to be a late stoppage in a heavyweight bout at UFC on ESPN 14. Things only got worse when Francisco Trinaldo took on Jai Herbert later that night. Trinaldo dropped Herbert with a punch and it appeared as though it was a clear knockout. Dean didn’t feel that way, allowing Trinaldo to land more punches before stopping the fight. This enraged Hardy, who traded words with Dean after the bout.
UFC senior vice president David Shaw said the promotion will be looking into the incident. Shaw said it wasn’t addressed during the event in an effort to avoid interfering with the jobs of Hardy and Dean.
2.Khabib vs. GSP? Dana White Might Entertain The Idea
UFC president Dana White was against booking UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Georges St-Pierre for the longest time. At first, White claimed it was because he wasn’t convinced GSP could cut the weight. Once St-Pierre began to slim down, White revealed the real reason. The UFC boss didn’t appreciate a deal gone south with St-Pierre, where “Rush” failed to defend the UFC middleweight title as agreed upon if he captured the gold.
Fast forward to the summer of 2020 and it appears White is warming up to the idea. The UFC boss has grown appreciative of Nurmagomedov over the past few years, and says he’d give “The Eagle” what he wants for his final UFC bout. While it’s unknown when Khabib will hang up his gloves, the GSP fight is his for the taking if he wants it and if “Rush” is still interested.
1.Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Justin Gaethje Official For Oct. 24
Speaking of Khabib, his next UFC lightweight title bout is official. He will meet interim champion Justin Gaethje on Oct. 24. Dana White announced the matchup when talking to CNN. Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Justin Gaethje is expected to be the main event of UFC 254.
Nurmagomedov brings with him a perfect pro MMA record of 28-0. He hasn’t competed since Sept. 2019, when he submitted Dustin Poirier to retain his 155-pound gold. As for Gaethje, he became the first man to defeat Tony Ferguson since May 2012 during their interim title bout at UFC 249.
That’ll do it for this week’s news in the world of MMA. Be sure to join MMANews.com this weekend for live coverage of UFC on ESPN+ 31. That event will be headlined by a middleweight bout between the undefeated Edmen Shahbazyan and tough veteran Derek Brunson.