At UFC 223, which goes down April 7 in Brooklyn, New York, Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov will battle for the UFC lightweight title. What exactly this means for Conor McGregor, who is hanging on to his own lightweight belt with both hands, remains to be seen.
Whatever the case, Nurmagomedov and Ferguson’s massive title clash is already dominating fan attention. Everybody and their mother has opinion on the fight, and that includes the pair’s fellow fighters.
In a recent interview with MMAFighting.com, dangerous lightweight contender Dustin Poirier made his pick for this anticipated title fight. While he acknowledged the skills of both men, he’s leaning in the direction of Nurmagomedov.
“Just the two styles, I think Khabib’s going to pressure him and be stronger and better on top, harder to submit,” Poirier said. “I mean, if Kevin Lee can take Ferguson down, Khabib is going to do the same. And we’ll see. We’ll see [Ferguson] on his back again, we’ll see him throwing elbows and throwing submissions. It’s an interesting fight, for sure, but I think the most dangerous thing is how long it lasts on the feet.
“I know Tony’s really unpredictable, moves in weird, awkward ways, different timing. Khabib’s not as fluid of a striker, but we’ve never really seen Khabib in trouble on top, in guard. He does a lot of damage from the top position as well. So it’s an interesting fight, but I think Khabib’s going to come out ahead.”
Dustin Poirier’s next fight will occur on April 14, when he’s set to battle former World Series of Fighting champion Justin Gaethje. If Poirier can topple this challenge, he’s likely to be right on the cusp of a fight with the Tony Ferguson vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov winner.
What do you think of Dustin Poirier’s prediction for the UFC 223 main event?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 2/13/2018.