Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, the father of UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov is making progress in his ongoing battle with ill health according to MMA manager Ali Abdelaziz who oversees his sons career.

Nurmagomedov Sr was first reported to be ill back in April but later told media he is feeling fine. His condition deteriorated rapidly from there and he was placed into a medically induced coma last month. A report from Russia yesterday claimed Nurmagomedov Sr remained in the same critical condition and was yet to awake from the coma. MMA manager Ali Abdelaziz has now contradicted that report by saying his client’s father is making positive progress in his recovery.

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“Khabib is very strong, his family is very strong and his father is very strong,” Abdelaziz told ESPN. “He’s improving. He opened his eyes, responding a little bit — good sign. Allah is in control. We have faith he will be better, but at the end of the day, it’s completely up to his health whether it progresses or not. But he’s progressing, and we’re very happy about this.”

Combate believes Khabib Nurmagomedov will defend his belt against interim titleholder Justin Gaethje in September at UFC 253. The lightweight champion has thrown himself into training during his father’s ill health and is super motivated to face off against ‘The Highlight’ later this summer according to Abdelaziz.

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“I think Khabib’s father being sick has motivated him more,” Abdelaziz said. “He’s training every day, two times a day. He’s in camp already. Me and him were talking and I said, ‘Hey, get your mind off, do what you need to do.’ He’s always training. He’s a true mixed martial artist. Same with Gaethje. They are both great guys and they want to fight. It’s a dream fight.”

Everyone at LowKickMMA sends our well wishes to Abdulamanap as he continues his recovery.

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A lifelong fight fan from Liverpool, England who has been covering mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing for several years. Follow @JordanEllisUK on Twitter for all the latest fight news, views, interviews and live event coverage.