DANA WHITE revealed Khabib Nurmagomedov told him 'I'm so many levels above these guys' after watching UFC 257.
Nurmagomedov watched as his two former opponents, Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier, headlined on Fight Island.
It was there McGregor was knocked out for the first time, with Poirier winning in round two.
In the chief support, UFC new boy Michael Chandler put Dan Hooker away in one round.
But none of the performers impressed lightweight champion Nurmagomedov.
White said: "I did talk to Khabib. He said to me 'Dana be honest with yourself, I'm so many levels above these guys, I'd beat these guys'.
"It doesn't sound very positive so we'll see. I've told you guys before he won't hold the division up. He's basically retired."
White had revealed earlier in the week that he met with Khabib to discuss the Russian coming back for one final fight.
But, with Nurmagomedov seemingly uninspired having watched the lightweight contenders scrap it out, the title could now be vacated.
According to White, Khabib predicted Poirier's route to victory, which involved tiring McGregor out before applying the pressure.
The UFC president revealed: "Khabib said to me in the first round that [Poirier] needs to come out in that first round and try to grapple.
"Tire him out, make him use his arms and legs. Get through a round and a half.
"And he thought the fight would go the other way if he could get Conor out of the first round-and-a-half."
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