Luke Rockhold challenged Khabib to a Street Fight after training mishap during his first week at AKA

In a recent podcast episode, former UFC champion Luke Rockhold opened up about the real story behind rumors that he once challenged the undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov to a fight in the parking lot of their gym.

The incident in question allegedly occurred years ago when Khabib was still an up-and-coming prospect training at American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) in San Jose alongside Rockhold and other stars like Daniel Cormier and Cain Velasquez. Stories spread that Khabib had gotten overly aggressive while sparring and kicked Rampage in the face, leading Rampage to become enraged and challenge the young Dagestani to a scrap right then and there in the parking lot.

However, Rockhold revealed on the podcast that while tensions did flare up between them that day, he never actually went as far as to fight Khabib outside the gym.

“Mostly in the parking lot, I was so pissed that…I think I took Khabib…Khabib, like, showed up, and I was like, ‘Who is this kid?'” Rockhold said. “And it was kinda Khabib, like, showed up by himself, really, by the gym. I was just so pissed, I was like, ‘I’m gonna take him out to the parking lot.'”

But despite Rockhold anger in the moment, the fight never ended up materializing.

“I took it easy on him [in] the parking lot,” Rockhold admitted.

So while Rockhold was clearly upset enough with Khabib’s aggressive sparring to contemplate teaching him a lesson outside the gym, he ultimately let tensions diffuse without resorting to throwing down in the parking lot, putting at least some of the wild rumors to rest.

Khabib, of course, would go on to become one of the most dominant stars in MMA history, retiring undefeated at 29-0 after submitting Justin Gaethje in 2020.