In the eyes of many MMA fans, Khabib Nurmagomedov has an argument for being the greatest fighter to ever live. Fighter’s like Justin Gaethje has faced Khabib and fell victim to his smothering ground game and flawless record. Furthermore, Gaethje believes that Khabib is such a dominant lightweight, that he would probably beat any fighter on the planet under 185lbs.
On official scorecards, Justin Gaethje won the first round of the fight against Khabib Nurmagomedov according to two out of three judges. Both men pushed the pace and respected each other. Gaethje was able to land hard leg kicks and stay alert during the fight. However, Khabib was able to walk through power shots, eventually grab Justin, and submit him in the second round. Usually, Khabib dominates his opponents with a vicious ground and pound. However, Khabib was conscious of the submission finish against Justin, and pre-determined the finish due to a reason he revealed later.
Gaethje Believes in Khabib’s Dominance
Gaethje recently appeared on ESPN MMA with Brett Okamoto. During the conversation, the men discussed Justin’s matchup against Khabib. Furthermore, Gaethje provided a statement on just how good he believes that Khabib truly is.
“I mean, he’s (Khabib) very strong, very strong,” Gaethje said. “You know, the transition from the takedown — you know, his ability to take shots, I landed some really, really clean shots and he’s got a hell of a poker face ’cause he acted — I know it hurt him, but he reacted like it didn’t hurt him.“
“He has a great jab, his jab is effective because of his level changes,” Gaethje explained. “I mean, you gotta almost pull your hips back every time he’s changing levels. I could’ve fought him a different way and tried to really stand my ground and not move as I did, you’ll never know — I’ll never know. But I’ll move on and keep working and push onto the next one. I’m not sure anybody under 185-pounds in the UFC or in the world could beat that man.“
What do fans make of Gaethje’s assessment of Khabib? Furthermore, which active fighters on the current UFC roster would give Khabib problems under 185lbs?