Beyond the Octagon

by Ben Fiore

In reference to the title of this article, there really aren’t many options.  In my opinion, Khabib is the scariest non-heavyweight fighter I’ve ever seen in the UFC.  The image above showcases the submission he landed on American Dustin Poirier this past Saturday at UFC 242 hosted in Abu Dhabi.  Khabib displayed yet again that no matter who they throw at him, he will chew them up and spit them out.

Nurmagomedov is still undefeated posting a record now of 28-0.  He rose through the ranks of the lightweight class and has been the undisputed champion for sometime now.  This is the same man who probably ended Connor McGregor’s career.  In that bout, Khabib (who is usually a submission specialist) went blow for blow with Connor… and whooped his ass.  That seemed to be when everyone came to terms with the fact that this guy is forreal.  Let’s also not forget this Russian monster fought a fucking BEAR for training SEVERAL times.  Here’s him as a kid doing just that.

The guy is no joke.  He is aggressive, ruthless and above all, focused.  Watching him fight seems almost calculated.  He’s so precise with every strike, takedown and move in every single match up which makes him the smartest fighter today because he adjusts his techniques to his opponents weaknesses almost flawlessly.  If you watch his submission in the Poirier fight, he caught Poirier looking at his corner, hit him in the opposite direction to move his head in the exact position he needed to land that chokehold.  Take a look:

At this unstoppable point in the 30 year old’s career, what’s next?

POSSIBLE THREATS:

The UFC Released a statement that this man Tony Ferguson would be Khabib’s next fight.

Image result for tony ferguson

Ferguson has a record of 26-3 and is probably the only contender left to contest the Eagle on the ground.  The UFC needs someone who can even remotely compete with Khabib’s impeccable ground game.  I don’t even think Tony could take him but that’s their best bet. 

If this were a few years ago, I would maybe say someone like GSP (George St. Pierre) if weight classes were adjusted.  Or Dana White could attempt to give Khabib some type of incentive to bump up a weight class.  But realistically, I don’t see this guy losing ever.  I think he’ll retire an undefeated champ whenever he decides to hang up the gloves.  He has been purely dominant and left the rest of the world with no choice but to be in awe and appreciate probably the most technical and efficient fighter we’ve ever been lucky enough to lay eyes on.

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Written by benfiore

NBA writer of Beyond the Arc. Employee, podcast host and writer for Thoughts From the Bench.

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