Al Iaquinta: “Conor Has The Power To Put Khabib To Sleep, But Will That Happen?”
Al Iaquinta was asked to predict the potential outcome of UFC 229 main event. Khabib’s father said there is no chance someone could prepare Conor McGregor to outwrestle his son. Firas Zahabi stood by Khabib’s side when it was about stamina and endurance. Jon Jones said Conor has good wrestling skills and he didn’t want to predict the outcome. Like Bones, Al Iaquinta has no idea who is going to win the showdown. (via MMAFighting.com)
“The worst-case scenario, I think [Nurmagomedov] takes a few shots from Conor and just keeps coming forward,” Iaquinta told MMA Fighting. “I mean, Conor obviously has the power to put him out, but I don’t know. Does he? I think a lot of people think he does, because he’s knocked a lot of people out, but Khabib is tough. He sees things, he’s got a little awkward style, which is different. It’s tough to adjust to, because it’s so different, standup-wise.”
Al looked back at his fight versus Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 223 on April 7, 2018. He stepped in on 24-hours notice after Tony Ferguson and Max Holloway withdrew from the match. Al Iaquinta was defeated via unanimous decision. Yet, he believes the fight could have ended differently if he had more time to prepare.
“I think if I have a full training camp, it’s a totally different ball game,” Iaquinta said. “Totally different.”
Al Iaquinta hopes Khabib Nurmagomedov will press Conor McGregor as soon as the fight starts. He also thinks Conor will look for a way out of the game if it goes to the later rounds.
“I think he could just get after him,” Iaquinta said of Nurmagomedov. “Get after him, keep the pressure on him. Conor, he’s quit before. He’s given up. Against Diaz, it gets a little later rounds. I think he’s a pretty fighter. If the fight is pretty and it’s going good for him … [Chad] Mendes took that fight on no notice. He had zero in the gas tank going into that fight. If it’s five rounds of that, I think Conor is finding a way out.”
Raging Al hopes Khabib will destroy Conor McGregor via KO in the early rounds. He fought for five rounds versus undefeated Dagestani. If Nurmagomedov wins in violent fashion, it would be great for him!
“I hope he does,” Iaquinta said. “It would look good for me — if he beats the shit out of him more than he beat the shit out of me on a day’s notice. It’d look real good. So, I hope Khabib f*cking knocks his ass out, makes him quit and rearranges his face like he says he’s gonna do. I think it’s gonna happen — I hope it happens.”
In the end, Al Iaquinta thinks Conor McGregor has a very tough opponent. He says Khabib has a different fighting style. Raging Al also stated his hits didn’t have much effect on The Eagle.
“Khabib has been in there with [Edson] Barboza,” Iaquinta said. “I hit people, I’ve hit everybody. I had a tough time hitting him, and when I did hit him, it didn’t have much of an effect on him. He’s got a different style. Like, Dustin Poirier has more of a conventional boxing style. When someone is doing conventional things, you kind of know what’s coming. With Khabib, it’s a little different.”
Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor will fight at the main event of UFC 229 on October 6, 2018, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Who is your favorite?