The man at the centre of Khabib Nurmagomedov’s meltdown has slammed reports of what triggered the chaos.
On Tuesday, TMZ reported that Conor McGregor’s teammate Dillon Danis had called Khabib a ‘f***ing Muslim rat’ during the main event at UFC 229.
“We spoke with a fan who was sitting in spitting distance from Danis during the fight — and we’re told Danis was running his mouth throughout most of the fight,” the report said.
“There was a moment between the second and third rounds when Khabib shot a death stare right at Dillon, according to our witness who says it was obvious Khabib heard at least some of the insults.
“But, we’re told the final straw was the Muslim insult that Danis hurled toward the end of the fight.”
However Danis has since slammed the report, refuting the allegations.
“Khabib fans are attempting to smear me in an effort to justify his actions,” Danis told ESPN’s Ariel Helwani.
“I have never and would never denigrate anyone’s religion.
“I look forward to the results of the Nevada Gaming Commission investigation which will reject this bulls*** claim and put the blame where it belongs.”
McGregor’s coach John Kavanagh also said he didn’t hear anything from Danis.
“(Danis) actually didn’t say anything,” Kavanagh said.
“I was standing beside Dillon. I didn’t see what he did but I could hear. He didn’t say anything.
“When I watched it back I could see him beckon (Nurmagomedov) on. It’s just stupid end of fight stuff. But it didn’t justify that level of response.
“Maybe there was something else in the build up. Dillon is a little bit of trouble online.”
The incident the really sparked the rampage?
After making McGregor tap in the fourth round, Khabib jumped out of the Octagon and attacked Danis after seeing him tangle with one of his managers.
As you can see in the video at the top, Khabib’s ‘Dominance MMA’ managing partner Rizvan Magomedov walks up behind Danis and mockingly pats him on the back.
Danis takes exception to the act and shoves Magomedov, which Khabib saw and immediately went berserk.
The Russian fighter then attacked Danis, while two other members of his team jumped into the Octagon and went after McGregor.