Are Khabib Nurmagomedov and Zabit Magomedsharipov friends?
Khabib Nurmagomedov and Zabit Magomedsharipov are two of the most successful and popular Russian fighters in the UFC. It’s known that Khabib and Zabit are both from the same region, Dagestan Republic, and you might be wondering what kind of relationship is between two of them – if there is some kind of competition or they are pretty good friends.
First of all, it’s important to note that Khabib and Zabit don’t train together. While at home in Makhachkala, Dagestan, Khabib trains at his father’s gym “Eagles MMA”; Zabit at home trains at the gym called “Dagestan MMA”. I guess, there must be some sort of competition between the two best MMA gyms in Dagestan something like wrestling/combat sambo school of Nurmagomedov’s vs wushu-sanda school.
To prepare for their UFC bouts, Khabib and Zabit do training camps in the United States. Nurmagomedov goes to the AKA gym in San Jose, California where he is coached by Javier Mendez and his team. Magomedsharipov does training camps with Mark Henry/Ricardo Almeida’s team in New Jersey. That’s why Zabit is a sparring partner and a very good friend with Frankie Edgar.
An interesting fact: Khabib and Zabit do have something in common – they have the same managers – Ali Abdelaziz and Rizvan Magomedov.
So what exactly is relationship between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Zabit Magomedsharipov? They are not best buddies like, for example, Khabib and his teammates Zubaira Tukhugov or Islam Makhachev. But there is a lot of mutual respect between the two of the best Russian martial artists. They are always respectful and supportive to one another in their interviews as well as in the social media.
Zabit could have joined Khabib’s team to train with them (if he really wanted to) but he probably chooses to take his own path and not be looked at as another guy from “team Nurmagomedov”.
In the next few years it will be very interesting to see how Zabit would do against higher-ranked fighters and if he will be able to challenge Max Holloway’s for the featherweight title.