Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) 229: Orientalism vs. Occidentalism in the Media
“The Dagestani champion mauled the brash former ‘champ champ’—as McGregor calls himself—taking down the Irishman repeatedly, subjecting him to an absolute skull-shattering ground-and-pound that lasted for an excruciating two minutes, before using his terrifying wrestling skills to neutralise McGregor on the ground with a rear naked choke turned neck crank. As Khabib warned before the fight, it was certainly a long night for Conor.”
“Vladimir Putin has expressed his sympathy for Khabib Nurmagomedov after the Russian fighter lost his cool at UFC 229…Nurmagomedov stole headlines around the world after he leapt out of the cage towards his opponent’s entourage and incited a massive brawl inside the stadium……Nevertheless, in a meeting with Nurmagomedov……President Putin congratulated the fighter on his victory.”
Research Question (RQ):How was Khabib Nurmagomedov portrayed by the various Western and Eastern media platforms (i.e., newspapers, blogs, and sporting news websites) after his clash with Conor McGregor at UFC 229?
2. Theoretical Framework: The Clash of Civilizations Thesis
2.1. Sociology of Sports Scholarship and Clash of Civilization Thesis
2.2. Criticism on Clash of Civilization Thesis
3. Orientalism versus Occidentalism: The Clash of Civilization Thesis
4. Current Study Context: Khabib Nurmagomedov versus Conor McGregor
5. Research Method
5.1. Data Collection
5.2. Data Analysis
5.3. Positionality and Reflexivity
6. Results and Discussion
6.1. Western Media: The Orient within the Clash of Civilizations
6.1.1. The Blame Game
6.1.2. The Russian Dagestani Muslim
“For once the violence in the octagon looked secondary as a mass brawl ensued after Russian Khabib Nurmagomedov retained his UFC lightweight title with a submission win over Conor McGregor on Saturday.”
6.2. The Eastern Media: The Occidentalism within the Clash of Civilization
The Innocent Hero of the East against the Infidel
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
|1. Fox News||Khabib Nurmagomedov faces $2M fine for post-fight melee||USA||https://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/khabib-nurmagomedov-faces-2m-fine-for-post-fight-melee-report (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|2. The Guardian||Vladimir Putin sympathises with Nurmagomedov over McGregor brawl||UK||https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2018/oct/10/vladimir-putin-khabib-nurmagomedov-conor-mcgregor-ufc-229 (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|3. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty||Sucker Punch? Many Russians Back Irish Fighter McGregor Over Daghestani Khabib In UFC 229||USA||https://www.rferl.org/a/below-the-belt-many-russians-back-irish-fighter-over-local-daghestani-for-mma-championship/29523686.html (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|4. Business Insider||Vladimir Putin told Khabib Nurmagomedov’s father to cut him some slack after he incited a riot at UFC 229||USA||https://www.businessinsider.com/vladimir-putin-told-khabib-nurmagomedov-father-to-cut-him-some-slack-2018-10 (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|5. Bleacher Report||Conor McGregor vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov Is a Study of Contrasts||USA||https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2797108-conor-mcgregor-vs-khabib-nurmagomedov-is-a-study-of-contrasts (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|6. Sporting News||Khabib Nurmagomedov rejects fighting ‘idiot’ Conor McGregor again, even for $100 M||USA||https://www.sportingnews.com/us/mma/news/conor-mcgregor-khabib-nurmagomedov-ufc-rematch/r4iii30cwyt215twa1027j5me/ (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|7. ESPN||Post-fight brawl ensues after Khabib Nurmagomedov submits Conor McGregor||USA||https://www.espn.com/mma/story/_/id/24916111/khabib-nurmagomedov-defeats-conor-mcgregor-submission-ufc-229-main-event (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|8. The Sun||‘SMASHED AGAIN’ Khabib Nurmagomedov camp tell Conor McGregor to ‘bring security’ to UFC 242 in Abu Dhabi after Notorious’ Muslim jibe||UK.||https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/9430984/khabib-nurmagomedovs-camp-send-warning-to-conor-mcgregor-ahead-of-ufc-242-you-better-bring-security-with-you-to-abu-dhabi/ (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|9. The Mirror||Conor McGregor vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov: Russian’s cousin reveals damage “Irish b*****d” caused in UFC 229 brawl||UK||https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/other-sports/mma/damage-conor-mcgregor-inflicted-khabib-13380104 (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|10. Irish Examiner||The UFC call him Russian but, like his hated rival, Khabib is much more complicated||Ireland||https://www.irishexaminer.com/sport/arid-30873697.html (accessed on 1 November 2020)|
|11. Daily Mail||Khabib Nurmagomedov submits Conor McGregor in fourth round of epic UFC 229 title fight before chaos descends as Russian jumps into the crowd to fight Irishman’s team-mate Dillon Danis—then McGregor is PUNCHED in head by members of Khabib’s team||UK||https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/mma/article-6248751/Khabib-Nurmagomedov-beats-Conor-McGregor-submission-win.html (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|12. Bleacher Report||Khabib Nurmagomedov brought his best vs. Conor Mcgregor; then we saw his worst||USA||https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2799490-khabib-nurmagomedov-brought-his-best-vs-conor-mcgregor-then-we-saw-his-worst (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|13. Reuters||Brawls overshadow Khabib’s UFC title win over McGregor||United Kingdom||https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mma-ufc-ufc229-brawls/brawls-overshadow-khabibs-ufc-title-win-over-mcgregor-idUSKCN1MH09P (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|14. British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)||Khabib Nurmagomedov v Conor McGregor: Dagestan celebrates win||United Kingdom||https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-45782513 (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|15. Talk Sports||Conor McGregor opens up on brawl with ‘rat’ Khabib Nurmagomedov and says ‘let’s go again’||United Kingdom||https://talksport.com/sport/mma/547507/conor-mcgregor-brawl-rat-khabib-nurmagomedov/ (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|16. Irish Post||Conor McGregor issues threat to ‘scurrying rat’ Khabib Nurmagomedov ahead of UFC comeback||Ireland||https://www.irishpost.com/news/conor-mcgregor-khabib-nurmagomedov-insult-175822 (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|17. International Business Times (IBTimes)||Scurrying Rat! That’s what Conor McGregor called Khabib Nurmagomedov to challenge him||USA||https://www.ibtimes.sg/scurrying-rat-thats-what-conor-mcgregor-called-khabib-nurmagomedov-challenge-him-36253 (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|18. Sport Business||The McGregor effect: UFC 229 almost sells out within three minutes||USA||https://test.sportbusiness.com/news/the-mcgregor-effect-ufc-229-almost-sells-out-within-three-minutes/ (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|19. The New York Times||Khabib Nurmagomedov Could Face Fine and Suspension After Brawl at UFC 229||USA||https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/07/sports/mcgregor-khabib-ufc-229.html (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|20. Bleach Report||Khabib Nurmagomedov Mocks Conor McGregor: ‘This Is Not a Burger King’s Sport’||USA||https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2764330-khabib-nurmagomedov-mocks-conor-mcgregor-this-is-not-a-burger-kings-sport (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|21. CBSS Sport||UFC 229 results, Khabib vs. McGregor highlights: All hell breaks loose after Nurmagomedov wins||USA||https://www.cbssports.com/mma/news/ufc-229-results-all-hell-breaks-loose-as-khabib-nurmagomedov-submits-conor-mcgregor/ (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|22. ESPN News||Post-fight brawl ensues after Khabib Nurmagomedov submits Conor McGregor||USA||https://www.espn.com/mma/story/_/id/24916111/khabib-nurmagomedov-defeats-conor-mcgregor-submission-ufc-229-main-event (accessed on 15 November 2020)|
|23. NBC Sports||Melee at UFC 229 after Nurmagomedov chokes out McGregor||UK||https://www.espn.com/mma/story/_/id/24916111/khabib-nurmagomedov-defeats-conor-mcgregor-submission-ufc-229-main-event (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|24. The New York Times||McGregor vs. Nurmagomedov: Notorious Is Back||USA||https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/05/sports/conor-mcgregor-khabib-nurmagomedov-ufc-229.html (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|25. The Washington Post||Conor McGregor accuses Khabib Nurmagomedov’s manager of being a terrorist||USA||https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/2018/10/05/conor-mcgregor-accuses-khabib-nurmagomedovs-manager-being-terrorist/ (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|26. Undefeated||Bigotry fueled the Conor McGregor-Khabib Nurmagomedov brawl after UFC 229. The Undefeated.||USA||https://theundefeated.com/features/bigotry-fueled-the-conor-mcgregor-khabib-nurmagomedov-brawl-after-ufc-229/ (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|27. Daily Mail||Conor McGregor claims bitter rival Khabib Nurmagomedov will be’s ****ing his pants’ during fight with Justin Gaethje as he jokes that UFC lightweight champion will dive at his opponent’s legs ‘for a good whiff of his jockstrap’||UK.||https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/mma/article-8591587/Conor-McGregor-claims-Khabib-Nurmagomedov-s-ing-pants-fight-Justin-Gaethje.html (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|28. USA Today||Khabib’s manager calls Conor McGregor a ‘horrible human being’||USA||https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/mma/2018/10/07/khabib-manager-says-conor-mcgregor-not-good-guy-ucf-229/1560064002/ (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|29. Reuters||Brawls overshadow Khabib’s UFC title win over McGregor||UK||https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mma-ufc-ufc229/arrests-after-nurmagomedov-beats-mcgregor-idUSKCN1MH053 (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|30. MSN||Conor McGregor is slammed over ‘racist’ tweet branding Muslim UFC rival Khabib Nurmagomedov’s wife a ‘towel’||USA||https://www.msn.com/en-au/sport/mma/conor-mcgregor-is-slammed-over-racist-tweet-branding-muslim-ufc-rival-khabib-nurmagomedovs-wife-a-towel/ar-BBVyW17 (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|31. Fox News||UFC champ Nurmagomedov a conservative voice in Russia||USA||https://www.foxnews.com/world/ufc-champ-nurmagomedov-a-conservative-voice-in-russia (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|32. The Guardian||‘Politics forever’: McGregor fined $50,000, Nurmagomedov $500,000 for UFC 229 brawl||UK||https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2019/jan/29/conor-mcgregor-banned-six-months-khabib-nurmagomedov-brawlufc-229 (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|33. The Washington Post||Conor McGregor, Khabib Nurmagomedov suspended for their UFC 229 brawl||USA||https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/2019/01/29/conor-mcgregor-khabib-nurmagomedov-suspended-their-ufc-brawl/ (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|34. The Denver Post||Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor suspended, fined for UFC 229 brawl||USA||https://www.denverpost.com/2019/01/29/khabib-nurmagomedov-conor-mcgregor-ufc-229-brawl-suspensions/ (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|35. Los Angeles Times||Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov suspended for brawl after UFC 229||USA||https://www.latimes.com/sports/boxing/la-sp-conor-mcgregor-khabib-nurmagomedov-suspended-20190129-story.html (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|36. USA Today||Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor suspended for UFC 229 brawl||USA||https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/mma/2019/01/29/khabib-nurmagomedov-conor-mcgregor-suspended-for-ufc-229-brawl/38971999/ (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|37. CNN||UFC: Conor McGregor comeback ends in defeat amid chaotic scenes||USA||https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/07/sport/ufc-229-conor-mcgregor-intl/index.html (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|38. Business Insider||Khabib Nurmagomedov taunts Conor McGregor by calling him ‘slow’ in his first Instagram since victory.||USA||https://www.businessinsider.in/sports/khabib-nurmagomedov-taunts-conor-mcgregor-by-calling-him-slow-in-his-first-instagram-since-victory/articleshow/66124172.cms (accessed on 25 November 2020)|
|39. South China Morning Post||UFC fighter Khabib Nurmagomedov beats Conor McGregor both in the cage and in generosity—as these kindhearted stunts prove||China||https://www.scmp.com/magazines/style/news-trends/article/3047380/ufc-fighter-khabib-nurmagomedov-beats-conor-mcgregor (accessed on 15 January 2021)|
|40. South China Morning Post||UFC: Khabib and Vladimir Putin throw shade at Conor McGregor as Russian President praises chokehold||China||https://www.scmp.com/sport/martial-arts/mixed-martial-arts/article/3027058/ufc-khabib-and-vladimir-putin-throw-shade (accessed on 15 January 2021)|
|41. Al-Qalam||Khabib ‘100 times bigger than Mo Salah’ after winning for the Muslim world||Southern Africa’s Muslim Newspaper||https://alqalam.co.za/khabib-100-times-bigger-than-mo-salah-after-winning-for-the-muslim-world/ (accessed on 15 January 2021)|
|42. DNA||Khabib Nurmagomedov beats Conor McGregor to retain title at UFC 229||India||https://www.dnaindia.com/sports/khabib-nurmagomedov-beats-conor-mcgregor-to-retain-title-at-ufc-229-highlights-and-results-2672522 (accessed on 15 January 2021)|
|43. The Express Tribune||Arrests made after Khabib beats McGregor||Pakistan||https://tribune.com.pk/story/1820264/arrests-made-khabib-beats-mcgregor (accessed on 15 January 2021)|
|44. TRT World||Criticism of Khabib smacks of racism||Turkey||https://www.trtworld.com/opinion/criticism-of-khabib-smacks-of-racism-20718|
|45. Al-Jazeera||Khabib on UFC McGregor brawl: ‘He talked about my religion’||Qatar||https://www.aljazeera.com/sports/2018/10/07/khabib-on-ufc-mcgregor-brawl-he-talked-about-my-religion/ (accessed on 15 January 2021)|
|46. The Hindu||Khabib defeats McGregor to retain title before mayhem mars UFC 229UFC 229: Conor McGregor’s return to UFC after a two-year hiatus ended in a resounding defeat to lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.||India||https://sportstar.thehindu.com/other-sports/ufc-229-khabib-nurmagomedov-defeats-conor-mcgregor-to-retain-lightweight-title-brawl-erupts-after-fight-highlights-updates/article25148345.ece (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|47. Arab News||Khabib Nurmagomedov claims Conor McGregor make offensive remarks about his Muslim faith after post-fight brawl||Saudi Arabia||https://www.arabnews.com/node/1384006/sport (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|48. Kuala Lampur News||Khabib: Im ready to face Conor McGregor||Malaysia||https://www.kualalumpurnews.net/news/266093940/khabib-im-ready-to-face-conor-mcgregor (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|49. Dawn||Melee at UFC 229 after Nurmagomedov chokes out McGregor||Pakistan||https://www.dawn.com/news/1437416 (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|50. Daily Sabah||Nurmagomedov, McGregor suspended, fined for UFC 229 brawl||Turkey||https://www.dailysabah.com/sports/2019/01/31/nurmagomedov-mcgregor-suspended-fined-for-ufc-229-brawl (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|51. Khaleej Times||UFC 229: Khabib Nurmagomedov beats Conor McGregor||UAE||https://www.khaleejtimes.com/photos/sports/ufc-229-khabib-nurmagomedov-beats-conor-mcgregor (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|52. The Gulf Times||Scurrying rat! That’s what conor mcgregor called khabib nurmagomedov to challenge him||Qatar||https://www.gulftimes.com/golf/story/scurrying-rat-thats-what-conor-mcgregor-called-khabib-nurmagomedov-to-challenge-him (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|53. Republic World||‘Conor McGregor Begged Me Not To Kill Him’: Khabib Nurmagomedov On Their UFC 229 Bout||India||https://www.republicworld.com/sports-news/other-sports/mcgregor-begged-me-not-to-kill-him-khabib-on-their-ufc-229-bout.html (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|54. RT News||‘Revenge will be SWEET’: McGregor team-mate Dillon Danis SLAMS Khabib’s team as COWARDS over footage of infamous UFC brawl (VIDEO)||Worldwide (Origin Russia)||https://www.rt.com/sport/491661-dillon-danis-mcgregor-khabib/ (accessed on 20 January 2021)|
|55. Sports Keeda||Khabib vs. McGregor||India||https://www.sportskeeda.com/mma/khabib-vs-mcgregor (accessed on 20 June 2021)|
|56. The Express Tribune||McGregor can pass racist and Islamophobic insults, but Nurmagomedov can’t react to it?||Pakistan||https://tribune.com.pk/article/72808/mcgregor-can-pass-racist-and-islamophobic-insults-but-nurmagomedov-cant-react-to-it (accessed on 20 June 2021)|
|57. TRT World||Khabib: An unabashedly Muslim champion in an Islamophobic world||Turkey||https://www.trtworld.com/opinion/khabib-an-unabashedly-muslim-champion-in-an-islamophobic-world-40866 (accessed on 20 June 2021)|
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Hussain, U. Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) 229: Orientalism vs. Occidentalism in the Media. Journal. Media. 2021, 2, 657-673. https://doi.org/10.3390/journalmedia2040039
Hussain U. Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) 229: Orientalism vs. Occidentalism in the Media. Journalism and Media. 2021; 2(4):657-673. https://doi.org/10.3390/journalmedia2040039Chicago/Turabian Style
Hussain, Umer. 2021. "Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) 229: Orientalism vs. Occidentalism in the Media" Journalism and Media 2, no. 4: 657-673. https://doi.org/10.3390/journalmedia2040039