Khabib Nurmagomedov is speaking out against sports betting.
Khabib Nurmagomedov is running his fight promotion the way he wants without the influence of alcohol or betting. After a very successful fighting career, the former lightweight champion Nurmagomedov is now running his own fight organization. He started Eagle FC in 2020 when he took over the formerly named Gorilla Fighting Championship. Nurmagomedov spent one million dollars on the promotion and has quickly turned it into a lucrative fight organization. As the head of the promotion, Nurmagomedov is running things his own way and that means certain “vices” as he sees them, are not allowed.
Speaking with Russian media following the most recent event, Nurmagomedov was asked about the lack of sports betting involved with Eagle FC, and he explained that it is by design. Nurmagomedov feels that gambling is an addiction worse or equal to drugs and he will not be responsible for that kind of influence.
— Eagle FC (@EagleFightClub) August 24, 2022
“We have plenty of good sponsors that we work with and put on events we don’t need bookmakers. I believe that gambling is more dangerous than alcohol,” he explained. “I think it’s worse to advertise bookmakers than alcohol. Bookmakers ruin entire families. You know that yourselves, how many young guys go on their sites and stay on them and become addicted? Families get ruined because of it you know well how strong an addiction gambling is, the same as a drug addiction. It’ll be the same as if I were advertising drugs. Gambling and drug addiction are on the same level for me.”
Nurmagomedov is making sure his fight promotion aligns with his values and beliefs
Nurmagomedov comes from a strong Muslim background and does not drink alcohol at all. He has been vocal about his religious values in the past when frowning upon women fighting in MMA. Currently, his Eagle FC does not have any women’s divisions and most likely will not ever due to his views.
Sports betting has become a very lucrative platform within the world of MMA. The UFC has betting partners as do other promotions. The advertisement opportunities are many, but Eagle FC is staying clear. It is the only fight promotion in Russia without a Sports Book sponsor.
“Well, they pay big money, there are promotions that take the money, the bookmakers become the main sponsor they don’t need anymore. We’re not moving in that direction. We pay attention to the type of product we give to our audience. The only thing we promote is sport,” he said. “We don’t want the people that us to see alcohol or bookmaker ads, it’s very important to me. I don’t want people to discover a bookmaker from watching Eagle FC then go on their site and develop an addiction, that’s very important.”
Eagle FC holds events in Russia, Kyrgyzstan, and the United States. Eagle FC does have other sponsors, including an energy drink brand. The promotion has been doing well since its inception and has even attached former UFC fighters for many cards.