Controversy reared its ugly head this past Saturday Night at UFC 229 when UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov hopped the Octagon fence after a successful title defense against Conor McGregor to go after some of his teammates, which sparked a huge brawl between a plethora of people.
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department was on the scene during the brawl and they issued the following statement about the matter to MMA Fighting:
McGregor had declined to press charges against the fighters who attacked him, who were reportedly fellow UFC competitors Zubaira Tukhugov and Islam Makhachev. UFC President Dana White would state after the event that none of the fighters who attacked McGregor would never compete in the UFC ever again.
“LVMPD officers assisted with breaking up several small fights that took place after Saturday night’s UFC main event in Las Vegas,” the statement read. “After all parties were separated, no one involved wished to press charges and no arrests occurred.”
UFC President Dana White even said that Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval was in attendance at the event and had to also be escorted out of the building for his safety.
Nurmagomedov had his purse withheld by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) for his part in instigating the massive brawl and could be punished further in the coming days.
Nurmagomedov defeated McGregor by fourth-round submission at UFC 229 to retain the UFC lightweight title. After McGregor tapped, Nurmagomedov said something to him, then turned to McGregor’s corner. With McGregor’s training partner Dillon Danis egging him on, Nurmagomedov threw his mouthpiece in their direction against the fence, then climbed over the cage and jumped toward Danis. A wild skirmish ensued.
Inside the Octagon, McGregor climbed the cage in the direction of his corner and he was joined there by a member of Nurmagomedov’s team. McGregor threw a punch at the man. Then two other Nurmagomedov training partners entered the cage, attempting to attack McGregor. One landed a punch from behind on the former UFC lightweight champion.
The fights were broken up and both McGregor and Nurmagomedov were escorted from the area by police and security guards. White would not put the title on Nurmagomedov, fearing that it would incite further violence. Nurmagomedov was escorted out with fans pelting debris onto him.
The Nevada Athletic Commission will investigate the incident, executive director Bob Bennett told MMA Fighting on Saturday night, and Nurmagomedov’s purse is being withheld pending that probe. Others could also be disciplined, Bennett said.
“We’ll leave no stones unturned,” he said.
Nurmagomedov is likely facing a fine and suspension from the commission. At the post-fight presser, he apologized to the city of Las Vegas, the state and the UFC. White said Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval was in attendance at the fights.
Sandoval spokesperson Mary-Sarah Kinner confirmed that Sandoval was at UFC 229 and left following the main event. She referred further questions to the UFC.