Tony Ferguson is one of the most iconic UFC lightweights from the 2010s. Taking on some of the biggest names in the division and beating them, Ferguson was a beast in his own right. As such, one of the top names Tony faced off against was Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Well, to make it clear, Tony and Khabib had numerous face-offs over the years. First, the two were booked to fight in 2015 but The Eagle withdrew due to a rib injury. Then, the fight was rebooked in 2016, but this time Tony withdrew due to injury. As such, this trend continued, and their fight was canceled two more times.
Eventually, the UFC booked the fight for a fifth and final time for UFC 249 in April 2020. By now, Khabib was fresh off his second title defense against Dustin Poirier. Once again, tragedy struck as COVID-19 restrictions meant that Khabib would not be able to travel for the fight. As a result, Tony faced Justin Gaethje for the interim title instead and lost, snapping his 12-fight win streak.
Tony Ferguson vs Khabib Nurmagomedov fight purses
Unfortunately, a Tony vs Khabib fight remains one of the matchups cursed never to happen by the MMA gods. Whilst many feel as though Khabib would’ve coasted to victory, there are some willing to argue a case for Tony as well. However, since there is no true way to find out what would happen, we will have to settle for comparing their fight purses instead.
As such, let’s take a look at some of both fighters’ biggest earnings and then compare their overall career earnings at the end. Firstly, let’s take a look at Khabib’s biggest career paydays. Khabib’s first notable payday came after he claimed the lightweight title against Al Iaquinta at UFC 223. On the night Khabib earned a nifty $530,000 for his troubles. Following that, Khabib made his first defense against Conor McGregor at UFC 229, where he made $1,540,000, owing to a $500,000 deduction for inciting a post-fight brawl.
Then, in his final two fights against Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje respectively, Khabib earned $6,090,000 for each outing. In comparison, Tony’s first notable payday came against Kevin Lee at UFC 216. On the night, Tony earned $530,000. Moreover, Tony earned a career-high $955,000 when he fought Justin Gaethje at UFC 249. Then, for his fights against Charles Oliveira, Beneil Dariush, and Michael Chandler, Tony earned $516,000 on each occasion despite losing.
According to sources, Tony made $721,000 against Nate Diaz, for stepping up to take the fight on short notice. As such, this brings El Cucuy‘s all-time earnings to $5,447,000 ($5.4 million) in comparison to the massive $14,770,000 ($14.7 million) Khabib earned during his career. Thus, despite never watching them fight each other, we still have a way to compare the two incredible fighters.