Sports Nicknames - The Eagle

Khabib Nurmagomedov is widely considered as one of the best to have ever taken part in mixed martial arts (MMA). He was born in the Dagestan ASSR, an autonomous republic within the Soviet Union. It was here where he trained in wrestling and started his career as an MMA fighter. A symbol of the Dagestan Republic is the Eagle, where Khabib gets his nickname.

The profile drawing of MMA fighter Khabib Nurmagomedov, also known as The Eagle.  Illustration.  Art piece.

Khabib signed a 6-fight deal in UFC's lightweight division in 2011, winning all of them with ease. Khabib went up against opponents such as Abel Trujillo, Thiago Tavares and Pat Healy before taking the UFC Lightweight Champion title in 2018 against Al Iaquinta.

He fought his first defence of this title against Conor McGregor in October of that year, where he won the first 2 rounds, but lost the third. It was the first time that he had lost a round in his career. The match was also notable for Khabib climbing out of the ring to attack McGregor's teammate Dillon Danis.

Khabib's streak of victories would not relent, as he won 2 more fights against interim lightweight champion Dustin Poirier in September 2019 and Justin Gaethje in October 2020. It was after this fight that Khabib announced his retirement, as his father had died in July due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He had promised his mother to not fight without his father (and trainer) watching.

Khabib ended his career undefeated in 29 fights, having also been the first Muslim to win a UFC title. He is also the longest-reigning UFC Lightweight Champion, having held the title since April of 2018. The Eagle has left a nearly pristine legacy following his retirement, and is rightly considered one of the best to ever step into the octagon.


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