It has been revealed that UFC legend Khabib Nurmagomedov turned down a $137 million blockbuster fight against Floyd Mayweather because of a promise to his mother.
The 29-0 lightweight champion defeated Justin Gaethe in October and immediately announced it would be the last fight of his career, becoming the first man to retire at the top of the pound-for-pound rankings.
"This was my last fight. No way I can come here without my father. When UFC call me with Justin, I talk with my mother for three days. I promise it will be my last fight. If I give my word, I have to follow this," Khabib told the UFC broadcast at the time.
It's not uncommon for UFC fighters to retire and return but Khabib has stood by his word in the face of immense pressure and speculation over the past six months.
Much of the world accepted the news but UFC boss Dana White couldn't bring himself to giving up the dream of convincing Khabib to come back.
White was desperate to push the narrative that Khabib would return to chase the 30-0 against fellow legend Conor McGregor as it was the biggest fight possible.
However, it turns out a potential fight against McGregor was just the tip of iceberg when it came to tantalising fight offers.
Khabib's manager, Ali Abdelaziz, recently told the Hotboxin' with Mike Tyson podcast that boxing-legend Mayweather's team had contacted him since October to try to put a fight deal in place for the pair.
"Khabib got offered $100 million (USD) after he was retired to fight Floyd Mayweather.
"$100 million. $100 million. You can ask Floyd. You can ask everybody.
"Khabib said, 'No, I'm retired. I told my mother I'm retired. I'm going to keep my word to my mother. If my mother told me to fight again, maybe I will. But right now, she told me not to fight'."
In March, Khabib revealed more about his relationship with his mother to ESPN, saying her health would always hold priority over money.
"My view and my relationship with my mother, I feel like I have to stop because I feel like in every fight, every training camp, this takes some age away from my mother.
"And it's like what do I have to do? I came to this sport to show who I am and became the best, I'm world champion, and pound-for-pound No. 1. I defended my title three times.
"I defended my title in biggest fight of UFC history. What else? Only money-fights, but I don't need money."
Khabib's sensitivity to his mother's wishes is likely compounded by the fact his father, who was also his coach, passed away last year after contracting Covid-19.
"It's very hard. People maybe will never understand me, but I really hope they're going to support my decision because everyone has their views."
- with news.com.au