Former UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis, who battles Tony Ferguson in the UFC 229 main event, has high praise for the card’s main event fighters Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor.
While Anthony Pettis currently considers the reigning champion Khabib Nurmagomedov to be the best lightweight in the game, however, he considers the former champ Conor McGregor to be the true champion. He also expects McGregor to reclaim the title with a knockout of Nurmagomedov.
“Khabib [is the best lightweight],” Anthony Pettis said at a UFC 229 media event on Tuesday (via MMAjunkie). “I think Conor wins. Knockout. I don’t know what round, because Khabib gets hit and Conor has the weapon to put him away. We all saw holes in his striking game. We saw his last fight against Al [Iaquinta]. We’ve seen how he performs. If he comes like that against Conor, it’s over. I’m sure he’s motivated and I’m sure Conor is motivated.”
Anthony Pettis then explained why considers Conor McGregor the true lightweight champion. In his eyes, McGregor’s 2016 win over Eddie Alvarez cements him as the legitimate champ. He never lost the title, after all, but was stripped for inactivity.
“I think Conor’s win over Eddie solidifies him as the champion,” Pettis said. “Khabib beat Al Iaquinta. That’s just facts. The belt is where it is. They had to do it for the business – they had to move it forward. But if it was true to the game, Conor would be the champion.”
What do you think of Anthony Pettis’ prediction for the UFC 229 main event? Who do you think will come out on top?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 10/2/2018.