Monday, April 15

Umar Nurmagomedov approaching newbie Bekzat Almakhan at UFC Fight Night 238 ‘like I’m defending the title’

February 28, 2024 6:50 pm ET

LAS VEGAS– Umar Nurmagomedov comprehends he’s strolling into something of a trap battle at UFC Fight Night 238, however he will not enable himself to stop working.

After browsing everywhere for a ranked bantamweight to eliminate on Saturday at the UFC Apex (ESPN+), Nurmagomedov (16-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC) needed to settle with any match he might get. That ended up being advertising newbie Bekzat Almakhan (14-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC), who is available in as a huge underdog.

On paper, this ought to be a display bout for the unbeaten increasing star. Nurmagomedov comprehends those expectations, which’s why he didn’t take preparation gently.

“I didn’t believe this battle was going to be a simple defend me and I didn’t train like it,” Nurmagomedov informed MMA Junkie and other press reporters at UFC Fight Night 238 media day. “I trained extremely hard. I trained like I’m defending the title. I’m not sleeping. For my challenger, it’s a huge chance. I believe he’s doing a really fantastic task. We’ll see this Saturday.”

Nurmagomedov was arranged for his advancement chance in a centerpiece versus Cory Sandhagen in August. He suffered a major shoulder injury in training that required him to withdraw, which cost him his huge opportunity.

He could not get the very same stature of challenger for this date, and some fans believe that’s simply great. There’s a story around Nurmagomedov that he’s getting fast-tracked since of his name and association with UFC Hall of Famer Khabib Nurmagomedov, however the 28-year-old has a various point of view.

“They’re simply discussing, ‘He does not be worthy of, he hasn’t beaten no one.’– how didn’t I beat no one?” Nurmagomedov stated. “(I’m) 4-0 in the UFC, it’s okay. The number of fighters start like this? I do not wish to be arrogant. I do not wish to state, ‘I’m the top, I’m high level.’ … I discuss that someone will concern UFC and reveal an excellent efficiency and he smashed all his challengers, that implies they need to battle with someone strong. You can’t state, ‘He didn’t should have, he needs to battle someone.’ How am I going to beat someone? Like Merab (Dvalishvili) discuss this: How am I going to beat someone if they do not (accept) the battle.”

Nurmagomedov confesses the problem in getting top-tier challengers to eliminate him rather inflated his ego. He believes he’s carried all that successfully, and will stroll into UFC Fight Night 237 with his head in the ideal location.

“They make me believe I’m the champ in this (when they deny battles),” Nurmagomedov stated. “Then I’m going to health club and Khabib (Nurmagomedov) or another person smashes me, and they bring me down to earth. I hope they will take these battles and authorize somebody in the leading 5 after this battle.”

For more on the card, check out MMA Junkie’s occasion center for UFC Fight Night 238.

ยป …
Find out more