Ferguson had to pull out of the fight due to an injury.
He said: "Words can't express how hurt, frustrated, angry and in disbelief I am right now". I said ok, I need somebody.
"I don't want to think it's much easier fight than Tony Ferguson", Nurmagomedov said.
The undefeated Dagestan fighter was all set to finally - finally - fight longtime rival Tony Ferguson for the undisputed lightweight title at UFC 223. "I don't want to underestimate this guy". Aside from being the champion of another division, Holloway also is dealing with an ankle injury, which kept him from competing in his own scheduled main event last month at UFC 222. I need to fight for the title, but I don't care who. Unfortunately, Ferguson was forced to withdraw just six days before the fight after suffering a torn knee ligament, per Brett Okamoto of ESPN. "I think Holloway is not any less interesting than Ferguson".
"You know what they say, to be the best you've got to beat the best and the best is blessed".
The lightweight title, however, still will be up for grabs as featherweight champion Max Holloway will step in to face Nurmagomedov.
Okay, Khabib Nurmagomedov fans, we have good news and we have bad news. "I'm here, six days' notice - April 7 is going to be a great night".
But still, to accept this fight in these circumstances, its speaks volumes about Holloway walking the walk, and not just talking the talk.
Nurmagomedov (25-0-0) has already earned nine wins in UFC competition, last defeating Edson Barboza by decision at UFC 219. He was fighting in the 145-lb weight class and will be fighting in the 155-lb weight class.