UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov has been issued a nine month suspension and a $500,000 fine from the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) for his role in the UFC 229 post-fight brawl.
The champion, who wants to return to action this November at the annual Madison Square Garden (MSG) card, believes the UFC will soon book a UFC Interim Lightweight Title bout between Tony Ferguson and Dustin Poirier.
“I think that they will create an interim title,” Khabib said to Sportbox (via RT Sport). “It could be between Poirier and Ferguson. Whoever wins will become the interim champion, and then at the end of the year we will fight for the real belt. I think that could happen. At the moment I don’t know for sure.”
Ferguson is a former UFC Interim Lightweight Champion and ranked #1 in the UFC Lightweight Division rankings, while Poirier sits in the #3 position. Ferguson won the interim lightweight title by defeating Kevin Lee at UFC 216, but was stripped of the gold due to injury shortly before UFC 223.
There has been no comment from the UFC as to any potential interim title being created, but with Nurmagomedov sitting out until November, it would mean that there would be no title fights at lightweight for almost a years time.