Islam Makhachev Claims Usman Nurmagomedov Has Better Striking Than Dustin Poirier

UFC
May 22, 2024
Islam Makhachev believes teammate Usman Nurmagomedov is a better striker than upcoming opponent Dustin Poirier.

Makhachev is scheduled to defend his lightweight title against Poirier in the main event at UFC 302 on June 1 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. Since he’s in the same weight class, Bellator MMA lightweight champ Nurmagomedov is one of Makhachev’s chief sparring partners in camp.

While Nurmagomedov couldn’t join the rest of the team until recently, Makhachev revealed that the undefeated Bellator champ gave him some solid rounds as soon as they sparred. The reigning lightweight champion heaped praise on his teammate, also labeling him a better striker than Poirier.

“Usman, honestly always give me good rounds,” Makhachev said on the "Weighing In" podcast. “After he was sick and he just come back two days ago. We [rest of the team] are one week here. When he feel like better, right away he come to support me. And today he give me two good rounds. This guy I think have better striking than Dustin. He gave me good time in the striking because you know, his kick, his arm, he’s really good in the striking honestly. And when you spar with some guy at the high level, they call it [iron sharpens iron].”

While Dagestani exports are renowned for their dominant grappling, many have showcased elite striking skill sets over the years, including both Makhachev and Nurmagomedov. Nurmagomedov has scored eight of his 17 career wins via KO/TKO, albeit many of them via ground-and-pound. Nurmagomedov recently pulled out of a title defense against Alexander Shabliy scheduled for Bellator Paris on May 17 due to an undisclosed injury. The fight was supposed to be his return from a six-month suspension due to a failed drug test that resulted in his last title defense against Brent Primus being overturned to a no contest.

Makhachev has also shown exceptional striking in dropping Charles Oliveira before submitting him to win the title and knocking out Alexander Volkanovski with a head kick in his second title defense.

Meanwhile, Poirier is known to be one of the most lethal strikers in the UFC lightweight division with 15 of his 30 career wins coming via KO/TKO. “The Diamond” has outclassed famed strikers like Justin Gaethje, Dan Hooker, Anthony Pettis, Max Holloway and Conor McGregor.

Reference: https://www.sherdog.com/news/news/Islam-Makhachev-Claims-Usman-Nurmagomedov-Has-Better-Striking-Than-Dustin-Poirier-193778

More news

EVENTS / FIGHTS
Jun
22
2024
UFC ON ABC 6
Whittaker vs. Chimaev
Jun
29
2024
UFC 303
McGregor vs. Chandler
Jul
13
2024
UFC ON ESPN 59
Barber vs. Namajunas
Jul
20
2024
UFC ON ESPN 60
Juky 20
Jun
28
2024
PROFESSIONAL FIGHTERS LEAGUE
PFL 6: 2024 Regular Season
Aug
2
2024
PROFESSIONAL FIGHTERS LEAGUE
PFL 7: 2024 Playoffs
Sep
28
2024
PROFESSIONAL FIGHTERS LEAGUE
PFL Europe 3: 2024 Playoffs
Jul
5
2024
ONE CHAMPIONSHIP
One on Prime Video 24
Aug
2
2024
ONE CHAMPIONSHIP
One on Prime Video 25
Sep
6
2024
ONE CHAMPIONSHIP
One 168: Denver
Oct
4
2024
ONE CHAMPIONSHIP
One on Prime Video 25
Jun
22
2024
UFC ON ABC 6
Whittaker vs. Chimaev
Jun
28
2024
PROFESSIONAL FIGHTERS LEAGUE
PFL 6: 2024 Regular Season
Jun
29
2024
UFC 303
McGregor vs. Chandler
Jul
5
2024
ONE CHAMPIONSHIP
One on Prime Video 24
Jul
13
2024
UFC ON ESPN 59
Barber vs. Namajunas