Las Vegas, NV — Ahead of UFC Vegas 57 this weekend, Umar Nurmagomedov opened up about his frustration during his rookie year in the UFC.
It has been a rough two years for Nurmagomedov, but things are finally starting to pick up. The 26-year-old was initially supposed to debut in the UFC in 2020, but the global pandemic put a halt to that, as well as injuries. He was scheduled three times that year; all three fights fell through.
Nurmagomedov finally made his UFC debut in January of 2021 against Sergey Morozov, and he submitted him in the second round, picking up a Performance of the Night. Unfortunately, Nurmagomedov couldn’t ride the momentum he created for himself because he didn’t fight again in 2021.
“It was really frustrating. I got signed to the UFC, and then I did debut, and for a long time, I couldn’t fight, Nurmagomedov said during his UFC Vegas 57 media day appearance. “It was very frustrating, but it’s part of the sport. These things happen when you train hard; injuries are part of the sport.”
Nurmagomedov went to add that despite the injuries, he didn’t rest of his laurels. “One thing that is different with me is I don’t take time off even when I was injured. I was trying to do something, two training [sessions] every day, at least go there, show up and learn something new. So when I got signed, I did my debut, but it was COVID, it was a bunch of other reasons, the injury, but I never let myself down. I kept training, and it is what it is.”
Nurmagomedov has already fought once this year in March, and he is turning around and fighting again this Saturday against Nate Maness. He hopes to fight two more times in 2022, which would be the most active he has been since 2017.
Watch the rest of Umar Nurmagomedov’s UFC Vegas 57 media day appearance above. The event takes place this Saturday, June 25, 2022 at the Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada.