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wandshogun09

UFC 249: Ferguson vs Gaethje - May 9 🇺🇸

Who wins and how?   

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Yeah it’s bound to be Saudi Arabia or maybe Abu Dhabi again. It was the Saudis who were reportedly making monstrous offers to do Khabib vs McGregor 2 over there not too long ago, wasn’t it? 

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For what it is worth, Khabib's Father is pushing for the fight to be held in either Abu Dhabi or Dubai. There are apparently only 11 known cases of COVID-19 in Dubai and just 8 in Abu Dhabi. 

 

 

 

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I genuinely couldn't give a hoot if this does one buy. I'm so invested in this and have been for sometime, I just want to see them square off. If they delay who knows if someone won't break their arse again.

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So, California is on a state wide lockdown. Khabib and Tony are both in California at the moment. Are we expecting Dana's next plan to be to smuggle them out in a tunnel, onto a boat and over to Singapore? 

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It’s no surprise to anyone but Dana’s an absolute nob isn’t he? The few quotes I’ve seen from him on this Coronavirus mayhem have all been along the lines of ‘This Khabib vs Ferguson fight is going ahead because I’ll make it happen. I can make anything happen’. It’s more about him and his ego than anything. He’s going to push forward to prove he can force the fight through. If he could see past his own self importance for a second, whether he can pull it off or not isn’t the most important thing here. 

Also, he clearly can’t make anything happen or we’d have got Fedor vs Randy in 2007/8 and Fedor vs Brock in 2009/10. Yes I’m still pissed off about that a decade later. 

Edited by wandshogun09

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You can't blame him really. How many chances will he have to offer a fight like this to an audience that has zero sports to distract or entertain them?

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2 minutes ago, David said:

You can't blame him really. 

I’ll do whatever I want.

Nah, I don’t blame him for still trying to keep this fight together. For the reason you give plus the fact that it’s fallen apart so many times before. Like Colin says, if they hold off longer and one of them gets hurt again we might never see it. It’s Dana making it about himself I find grating. Well, just Dana in general.

I actually hope this card somehow happens. From my own selfish POV the next few cards getting cancelled, while the correct call, is really shit. If UFC 249 somehow stays intact that’s something we can look forward to. And if it ends up in Abu Dhabi or Saudi Arabia, even better for us because it’ll be on at a decent hour UK time. 

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On an aside, and while trying to separate myself from the awful horrific shit that's going on in the world, I'm finding Dana to be some much needed comic relief at the moment.
He's like a South Park character. That's how I'm compounding and rationalising all this carry on out of him in my wee head.
 

 

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6 minutes ago, Scott Malbranque said:

I'm finding Dana to be some much needed comic relief at the moment.

Fo’ shizzle. 

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I will be rooting for Khabib when this fight eventually happens. While Khabib has done some scummy things in his time, I did used to be a big fan of his. I also adore him as a fighter.

Jordan Breen put it better than I ever could:

Quote

 

I’ve been watching this sport for 20 years now and while I’ve seen plenty of wrestlers with more amateur accolades, I’ve never seen someone wrestle in the cage like Nurmagomedov. His indefatigability on account of his ability to control pace, his footwork, his variety of takedowns. The smaller subtleties, like switching to a rear waistlock when he can’t get a single-leg takedown, then forcing his opponents to tripod onto their head, crushing their diaphragm and stealing their air. His ability to use his hands to lock his opponents up while using his hips and legs to pass into dominant position and trap them. How many fighters do you see, when their opponent attempts to shimmy up the cage wall, triangle their legs, then drill them with uppercuts from their knees?

“I can’t get him the f-ck off me, man,” an exhausted Poirier told his corner between rounds. The second and third rounds. Two minutes before he got choked out. Dealing with a different animal.

Typically when we think of “style” in MMA, we think about what particular martial art a fighter comes from, what techniques they can extrapolate from that art and how they play into the cage. With Nurmagomedov, it’s more complex, which to my mind, makes him the consummate MMA fighter. Yes, in the broadest strokes, he’s a “wrestler,” but it’s the little intricacies of his game that make him such a dominant force, make him so hard to train for and lead to even elite opponents in an outstanding weight class looking like hapless amateurs against him.

 

By contrast, I've never warmed to Ferguson as a person and I consider him to be a bit overrated as a fighter. The closer we have come to this fight taking place, the more confident I have become in a Khabib victory. 

Now, I have said all this, expect Ferguson to open a massive cut on Khabib in the opening round, and then submit him with a flying armbar. 

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Khabib is a monster, no doubt. There seems to be a point in his fights where you can almost see the look on his opponent’s face where they realise Khabib’s wrestling is beyond anything they felt in camp. Dustin Poirier, in particular, looked genuinely in shock at times during their fight. Look at the poor prick’s eyes here;

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That said, I don’t think Ferguson is overrated at all. If anything I think he gets played down as just a weirdo with a nice D’Arce choke. He’s not the pound-for-pound best ever or anything but he’s really fucking good. He’s got effective, varied, creative and hurtful striking. A really dangerous submission game, solid wrestling, tremendous conditioning and he’s tough as fuck. The only weakness he really has is that his recklessness often leaves him open to getting cracked, and we’ve seen that a few times. I think that’s one of the major differences in why he doesn’t seem as impressive as Khabib. You often come out of Khabib’s fights thinking he looks invincible. Whereas Ferguson has those moments where he’ll get clipped and dropped or he’ll end up in a bad position on the ground or something. The holes in his game are more clear. Of course, Khabib’s got that perfect unbeaten record as well. 

Not saying Ferguson is going to go in there and steamroll Khabib or anything. Khabib’s a killer and, in my opinion, almost certainly the best Lightweight in MMA history. But Ferguson is also a hell of a fighter and deserves the credit for that. And that’s coming from someone who’s never warmed to him either. I’ve always got the dickhead vibe off Ferguson. But I have to give the man his due. You don’t go on a streak like he has, for as long as he has, in a division like the UFC’s shark infested 155 weight class, unless you’re elite. Whether he beats Khabib or gets annihilated trying, I definitely think he’s got the best chance of making something happen with his box of tricks. If Khabib crushes Ferguson like he has everyone else, I really don’t see him losing at 155. If he beats Fergie, I think he’ll end up retiring unbeaten. Unless he moves up to 170 and someone can hand him a loss there.

I’ve said from the start that I’ve got a feeling Ferguson might pull this off. I still feel that way. But I won’t be shocked if Khabib just overwhelms him and batters him from top position. He’s that good. And as much as I say he hasn’t faced anyone who threatens from their back like Ferguson, the flipside to that is that Ferguson hasn’t had anyone on top of him like Khabib. On paper it’s the toughest fight of both their careers by quite a distance for me. 

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What always gets me is when fans try to make the case for Khabib getting "slightly rocked," or "losing a round" when T-Ferg got fucking slapped and rocked by Lando Vannata, of all people.

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Yeah that type of talk is shite. I’ve always said the ‘Michael Johnson rocked Khabib’ thing was a load of bollocks. That got way more attention than it warranted and I think that was mostly because of Rogan’s overreaction to it.

And the round Khabib lost against McGregor wasn’t exactly something to worry about if you’re a Khabib fan. I thought that looked more like him taking his foot off the gas after dishing out a thrashing to Conor the previous round. He was never once in trouble in that round. 

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57 minutes ago, wandshogun09 said:

That said, I don’t think Ferguson is overrated at all. If anything I think he gets played down as just a weirdo with a nice D’Arce choke. He’s not the pound-for-pound best ever or anything but he’s really fucking good. He’s got effective, varied, creative and hurtful striking. A really dangerous submission game, solid wrestling, tremendous conditioning and he’s tough as fuck. The only weakness he really has is that his recklessness often leaves him open to getting cracked, and we’ve seen that a few times.

Khabib vs Ferguson has been compared to Fedor vs Cro Cop, but I don't fully buy that comparison. On paper, Cro Cop was a stylistic nightmare for Fedor. The former was seemingly the better striker and had strong enough takedown/grappling defence to neutralise Fedor's sambo. 

By contrast, Khabib, who is the champion and thus in the same role as Fedor was in 2005, actually matches up well with Ferguson on paper. I agree that Ferguson does some very unorthodox stuff inside the cage. But, as I wrote on the previous page, the pace of the fight will probably not favour him. He is a slow starter and will probably have his gas tank drained in the early rounds by Khabib's grappling. Therefore, he will struggle to come on strong in the mid-rounds, which is usually where he does most of his damage. Moreover, Khabib's striking, while not flashy or varied, can be very effective. As an example, he did a good job of neutralising McGregor's striking in their 2018 bout. 

I understand the arguments you made on the previous page. But I am still not convinced that Tony will get much going against Khabib. I'll take the stick if I end up being wrong - like I was with Rockhold, Fury, etc 😉

I actually think Justin Gaethje is the fighter who matches up best with Khabib. That's not to say that Gaethje is a better fighter than Ferguson, just that I would give him more of a chance of beating Khabib. 

57 minutes ago, wandshogun09 said:

I think that’s one of the major differences in why he doesn’t seem as impressive as Khabib. You often come out of Khabib’s fights thinking he looks invincible. Whereas Ferguson has those moments where he’ll get clipped and dropped or he’ll end up in a bad position on the ground or something. The holes in his game are more clear. Of course, Khabib’s got that perfect unbeaten record as well. 

I get what you are saying, but I think it works both ways. 

For example, on the Weighing In podcast last week, the hosts were talking about how Ferguson had finished Barboza and Tibau, whereas Khabib went the distance with those two fighters. I think such comparisons ignore how fighting styles can mesh differently with each other. And that certain fighters are more likely to finish their opponents inside the distance more than other fighters - but not necessarily be superior fighters overall. 

Edited by jimufctna24

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All good points Jim. I guess we’ll see. Oh fuck, maybe we won’t 😕

On the Fedor vs Cro Cop thing though. I wasn’t so much comparing them in terms of the threat Cro Cop posed to Fedor vs the threat Ferguson poses to Khabib. More just that it’s THE two best guys in a division facing off in their primes. The reason I feel like this is slightly bigger is that they’re both on long streaks in arguably the deepest division in the sport. Whereas Cro Cop had been knocked spark out by Kevin Randleman the year before the Fedor fight and had the loss to Nogueira as well. Not a knock, you know I love Mirko. But as huge as Fedor vs Cro Cop was in 2005, imagine how monstrous it would’ve seemed if Cro Cop was coming in off a streak and had beaten Nog? 

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