Speaking to Business Insider ahead of his BKFC 6 showdown with Paulie Malignaggi, Artem Lobov shared his take on a rematch between Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov.
McGregor, a long-time friend and training partner of Lobov, lost to Nurmagomedov by submission in October of 2018. Yet Lobov believes the Irish star would perform much better in a rematch with the Russian champion, pointing to McGregor’s rematch with Nate Diaz as evidence.
“If you look at the past … look at what happened with Diaz,” Lobov said. “When he realized a mistake, he said, ‘Okay, no problem,’ took it on the chin, went back to the drawing board, completely took new approach toward the fight camp and got the win. I think it would be no different this time.”
Artem Lobov went on to assure that losses are an inevitable part of combat sports — even for stars like Conor McGregor — contrary to the undefeated records we often see in boxing.
“The sport of boxing has ruined this for everybody by padding the record, building these fake, undefeated guys,” he said. “In boxing you look around and everyone is undefeated, everyone is a world champion, and nobody wants to fight each other.
“So the result is, the fans have this wrong understanding of how the competitive world works. In a competitive world, everybody loses. There is no issue with a loss. It’s how you come back from it that will define you. And I believe Conor will be victorious [against Nurmagomedov].”
At present, Khabib Nurmagomedov is gearing up for a UFC 242 with Dustin Poirier. Conor McGregor, on the other hand, doesn’t currently have a fight scheduled.
That being said, a rematch between the two lightweight stars remains one of the biggest attractions possible for the UFC.
How do you think Conor McGregor would do in a rematch with Khabib Nurmagomedov? Is Artem Lobov right?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 6/21/2019.