Khabib Admires Dustin Poirier, Preparing Strategy for Islam Makhachev for Clash at UFC 302

Khabib Nurmagomedov (Via UFC)

Khabib Nurmagomedov has a strategy in place for Islam Makhachev as he prepares to face Dustin Poirier.

Next Saturday, Makhachev will defend his lightweight title against Poirier in the main event of UFC 302. This marks Makhachev’s third title defense, offering him a chance to tie the lightweight record held by four different champions.

Heading into the bout, Nurmagomedov—Makhachev’s friend, coach, and former lightweight champion—believes they have a clear advantage, given his own experience against “The Diamond.”

“Many people underestimate Dustin Poirier,” Nurmagomedov said in a YouTube video documenting Makhachev’s training camp.

UFC 302 Event (Via UFC)

“I personally fought him, spent three rounds and over 10 minutes with him, and I have a good sense of his strengths and weaknesses. We are working hard on these aspects.”

Nurmagomedov fought Poirier back in 2019 at UFC 242, when Poirier was an interim lightweight champion.

Although Poirier had his moments in the fight, it ultimately turned out to be another dominant performance from the greatest lightweight of all time, as he went on to submit Poirier in the third round.

However, Khabib hopes Makhachev will be able to improve on his past performance against Poirier when they fight.

“Dustin is very experienced; he’s been in many battles already,” Nurmagomedov said. “Yes, he has lost, but he also has many victories in the UFC, more than 22 or 23 wins.

Khabib Nurmagomedov (Via UFC)

Using our slang, he is a seasoned warrior. You can’t take him lightly. We have great respect for Dustin, but on June 1, he is our opponent. We have a clearly developed plan for the fight, and I believe Islam will follow it. I really hope that Islam will finish him off in the second or third round.”

While Khabib did not elaborate on their game plan, Makhachev was less secretive. Speaking during the video, the UFC lightweight champion kept things straightforward, noting that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” will be the prevailing idea.

“I think this fight will be beneficial for us to review and build a plan together,” Makhachev said when discussing Nurmagomedov’s fight with Poirier.

“When Khabib was preparing for him, we trained together, and I was already involved in the discussion of the fight preparation plan against Dustin. I don’t think the preparation and plan for the fight will differ much because we know Dustin’s strengths and weaknesses.”

UFC 302 takes place this Saturday at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.

Harshad Patel

Written by Harshad Patel

Harshad Patel, a passionate and zealous blogger, writes about WWE with an unmatched fervor. With a writing style that is as dynamic as the wrestling matches he covers, Harshad captures the essence of WWE through his insightful analysis.

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