Conor McGregor, Khabib Nurmagomedov to both face NSAC complaints after brawl

MMA


LAS VEGAS — The Nevada State Athletic Commission will file formal complaints against Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor for their postfight actions at UFC 229 on Saturday at T-Mobile Arena.

NSAC chairman Anthony Marnell told ESPN on Monday the commission is conducting a full investigation into the melee that took place after Nurmagomedov’s championship victory against McGregor. The investigation includes lengthy film review and interviews with people involved.

The commission elected to hold Nurmagomedov’s $2 million paycheck in expectation of filing a complaint. It released McGregor’s $3 million payday but now intends to file a complaint against the Irishman as well, after reviewing tape that was not immediately available on fight night.

“We will be filing against Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov,” Marnell said. “Because we withheld one purse, we will have to move expeditiously to a complaint and hearing. “We have held 100 percent of one of the fighter’s money. Temporary suspensions will be out shortly, and we’re shooting for a final hearing date in November.”

After submitting McGregor (21-4) in the fourth round Saturday, Nurmagomedov (27-0) leapt over the cage and got into a physical altercation with members of McGregor’s corner. At the same time, video captured McGregor throwing a punch at one of Nurmagomedov’s teammates, who had entered the Octagon.

A third individual in a red sweatshirt was filmed jumping into the Octagon and punching McGregor as his back was turned. Three individuals were arrested, according to UFC president Dana White, but were released when McGregor declined to press charges.

Marnell said the commission is looking into measures to punish those individuals, despite McGregor’s decision not to pursue charges.

“There are a lot of things here,” Marnell said. “There are a lot of charges that can be brought against a spectator who came over the barricade, through the commission section and into the Octagon to strike a fighter three times. For the record, I have a massive problem with that. That cannot happen.

“We’re taking a really hard look at that gentleman. We know exactly who he is and where he is. I have to let the attorney general determine — is that trespassing, disturbing the peace? That was a serious action and it deserves a serious consequence.”

Nurmagomedov publicly apologized to the commission Saturday. He is facing a possible fine and suspension. White said Saturday if Nurmagomedov is out for an extended amount of time, the UFC would consider stripping him of his title.

“Both,” Marnell said when asked whether Nurmagomedov is facing a fine or suspension. “It’s always both. We could do one or the other, but at least in the chair’s mind, I think the commission will be entertaining a recommendation from the attorney general that will include both.”

The NSAC’s next commission hearing is scheduled for Oct. 24, but Marnell said there is “zero chance” complaints against McGregor and Nurmagomedov would be heard then. Marnell said the goal is to hold disciplinary hearings no later than the end of the November.

“This is a serious issue, this is not a light issue,” Marnell said. “This isn’t, ‘We smacked each other in the face in a hotel lobby the week of a fight.’ This is the night of the event, and it needs to stay inside that field of combat. There are serious regulations and statutes about what took place, and the consequences have to match the actions.”



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