Islam Makhachev sheds light on how Khabib Nurmagomedov and his father have played a monumental role in his career
Islam Makhachev questioned out loud on multiple occasions why he had to keep winning while others were given opportunities to challenge for championship gold before him on his way to the UFC lightweight title.
However, everything had been predetermined according to the iconic and pivotal father’s plan that was set in stone. The plan was realized at UFC 280 when Makhachev submitted Oliveira via submission in a spectacular display. [story via: ufc.com]
“I had a 10-fight win streak, but I think this is too long because someone fought just three or four times and they had the chance to fight for the title. My way, my career, I beat 10 guys, 10 opponents, and after the 10-fight win streak, I told everyone, ‘I think this fight is going to be key for the title fight.’
The 31-year-old from Dagestan rolled into the Octagon and ran through the Charles Oliveira, submitting him in the second round after winning his tenth straight fight in February of last year against Bobby Green. To many, including his late coach Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, this moment had been foreseen as the pinnacle of a lifetime of hard work.
“This is crazy moment because all my career, Abdulmanap said, ‘After Khabib, you’re going to be champion; when Khabib is retired,’” explained Makhachev. “When I did this, when I won this belt, I’m so happy. When Khabib gives me the belt, this is big moment in my career because this is my dream; this is what I (was focused on) all my career — my training, what I did, how I sleep. When you win the belt, you know you did all things right; that’s why I was so happy in this moment.”
Alexander Volkanovski weighs in on Khabib Nurmagamedov’s absence from Islam Makhachev’s corner at UFC 284
Islam Makhachev, the current champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s lightweight division, is unconcerned that Khabib Nurmagomedov will be absent from his corner at UFC 284. Makhachev’s mentor, Nurmagomedov, has stated that he will be spending much less time this year on the road and in the corners of his fighters. Makhachev will be defending his lightweight championship against Alexander Volkanovski on February 11 at UFC 284 in Perth, Australia, but “The Eagle” will not be there to help him out.
As a heavy underdog, Volkanovski is banking that Nurmagomedov’s absence won’t affect his chances of winning on Saturday night.
The UFC pound-for-pound king recently told ESPN’s Brett Okamoto:
“I mean only because people bringing that up. I’m like don’t use that an excuse when I get my hands raised. That’s the type of guy I am. Now yous are saying all these, just remember that… He’s fought without Khabib. Obviously having him here would have been incredible…But Islam proven that he’s a great fighter. He doesn’t need… It’s gonna be him in there, let’s be real. It ain’t gonna affect him one bit. So don’t use that as an excuse this Sunday.”
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