Coach Believes Islam Makhachev Can Outstrike Dustin Poirier

UFC
May 27, 2024
According to his coach, Islam Makhachev’s skills have reached their zenith.

Makhachev’s striking coach, Magomedgadzhi Bagandov, believes the champ can outstrike Dustin Poirier (30-8, 1 NC). Makhachev (25-1) is slated to defend his lightweight strap against Poirier in the main event at UFC 302 on June 1 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. With Poirier’s notoriety for emerging victorious in lethal slugfests and Makhachev’s Dagestani grappling background, taking the fight to the ground would be the obvious gameplan for the champion.

Makhachev’s camp has been highlighting the recent developments of their pupil’s striking skillset. Makhachev recently claimed that his teammate, Bellator MMA lightweight champ Usman Nurmagomedov, has better striking than Poirier. Coach Bagandov claims that Makhachev can not only hold his own in the stand-up against Poirier, but he may even have the advantage on the feet against “The Diamond.”

“I have been following Poirier for a long time,” Bagandov said on Khabib Nurmagomedov’s YouTube channel. “In terms of striking technique, he has a unique fighting style. Islam doesn’t just hold his own against him; if he doesn’t engage recklessly, Islam surpasses him… Even if you put wrestling aside, in my opinion, Islam can outbox him in pure boxing and in muay thai. There are no aspects in which Islam lags behind.”

Makhachev has shown significant development in his striking over the years, going toe-to-toe against the likes of Charles Oliveira and Alexander Volkanovski, even knocking “The Great” out with a head kick in his last outing. Meanwhile, Poirier recently reminded us of his lights-out stand-up game with a second-round knockout win over French finishing machine Benoit St. Denis in March.

Reference: https://www.sherdog.com/news/news/Coach-Believes-Islam-Makhachev-Can-Outstrike-Dustin-Poirier-193823

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