Any prediction about McGregor vs. Nurmagomedov in the upcoming UFC 229 is spreading like wild fire. While the momentum of the nearing bout has galvanized the public to share their opinions about the possible outcome of the fight, the artists too are taken up by this frenzy. There are some fighters who simply think that McGregor has the brawns and the brain to outpace his Russian adversary. On the other hand, there are some notable names in MMA that truly believe that Khabib Nurmagomedov is a unique combination of perfection and poise that can place the Irishman in an uneasy spot with the limelight searing into his best caliber.
And amongst those who doubt McGregor’s ability to stand tall in front of the raging beast from Dagestan is American fighter and lightweight contender Al Iaquinta.
Since Iaquinta had the chance to experience the explosiveness of the Eagle firsthand, as the two looked into the eyes of each other in April this year for lightweight title, the Gangster believes that McGregor would be having a tough time battling against an artist with such an indomitable potential.
This is what 31-year-old fighter had to say about McGregor vs. Nurmagomedov,
“The worst-case scenario [for McGregor], I think [Nurmagomedov] takes a few shots from Conor and just keeps coming forward. I mean, Conor obviously has the power to put him out, but I don’t know. Does he? I think a lot of people think he does, because he’s knocked a lot of people out, but Khabib is tough. He sees things, he’s got a little awkward style, which is different. It’s tough to adjust to, because it’s so different, standup-wise.”
The artist went on talking about Nurmagomedov,
“I think he could just get after him. Get after him, keep the pressure on him. Conor, he’s quit before. He’s given up. Against Diaz, it gets a little later rounds. I think he’s a pretty fighter. If the fight is pretty and it’s going good for him … [Chad] Mendes took that fight on no notice. He had zero in the gas tank going into that fight. If it’s five rounds of that, I think Conor is finding a way out.”
The #9 ranked lightweight artist further added,
“Khabib has been in there with [Edson] Barboza. I hit people, I’ve hit everybody. I had a tough time hitting him, and when I did hit him, it didn’t have much of an effect on him. He’s got a different style. Like, Dustin Poirier has more of a conventional boxing style. When someone is doing conventional things, you kind of know what’s coming. With Khabib, it’s a little different.”
With these statements, it is quite obvious that Iaquinta is safely betting for Khabib to don the lightweight crown. And he is wishing that his prediction would turn out to be true.
“I hope he does. It would look good for me — if he beats the shit out of him more than he beat the shit out of me on a day’s notice. It’d look real good. So, I hope Khabib f*cking knocks his ass out, makes him quit and rearranges his face like he says he’s gonna do. I think it’s gonna happen — I hope it happens.”
What do you think about Al Iaquinta’s prediction about Khabib reigning the lightweight summit in the upcoming McGregor vs. Nurmagomedov at UFC 229? Share your views here.