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Old 10-05-2020, 07:04 PM #4
Anthony342 Anthony342 is offline
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Originally Posted by OctoberRed View Post
Justin Gaethje has heard all the stories about how Khabib Nurmagomedov is unbeatable.

Considering the way the undefeated Russian has mauled his competition to become the reigning and defending UFC lightweight champion, his reputation isnít entirely exaggerated.

Nurmagomedov has walked through opponent after opponent inside the octagon while technically only losing one round during his entire UFC career.

But for all the gaudy accolades and accomplishments that Nurmagomedov has racked up over the years, Gaethje still believes he has one massive advantage that will help lead him to victory where 28 others have fallen to defeat.

ďMy confidence is probably my biggest factor right now paired with the power that I possess paired with the coach that I have,Ē Gaethje said when speaking to reporters during the UFC 254 media day. ďThatís a dangerous combination.

ďAnd I donít care if I win or lose at the end of the day. As long as I make my family happy, as long as Iím proud of my performance, then it doesnít matter. Thatís what makes me most dangerous. I donít know if heís fought somebody like that.Ē

When it comes to his power, Gaethje certainly has a proven commodity when it comes to the unbelievable amount of punishment heís able to dish out, which includes a trio of first round finishes in the UFC.

Even in defeat, the former World Series of Fighting champion has inflicted so much damage that past opponents like Dustin Poirier have compared the aftermath of a fight against Gaethje to going through a car crash.

Despite his incredible resume, Nurmagomedov has never had to endure that kind of punishment during his career and maybe heís up for the challenge.

Gaethje is definitely keen to find out.

ďAnybody can go to sleep,Ē Gaethje said. ďHeís a fool if he doesnít think he can go to sleep.Ē

Of course as confident as he might be about eventually putting Nurmagomedov away, Gaethje isnít foolish enough to expect this to be an easy night at the office for him.

In the days leading up to the fight, one of the questions thatís been posed to Gaethje more than any other is how heís going to deal with Nurmagomedovís wrestling.

Over the course of his UFC career, Nurmagomedov has landed 57 takedowns, which is second all-time in lightweight history including a stunning 21 takedown performance against Abel Trujullo, which set a single-night record inside the octagon.

For his part, Gaethje actually comes from a wrestling background after he became an All-American while competing at the University of Northern Colorado but heís not expecting to match takedown for takedown with Nurmagomedov when they clash on Oct. 24.

ďIíve wrestled my whole life. I wrestle a lot in there,Ē Gaethje said. ďA huge part of wrestling is not being able to let someone take you down and hold you down. That was my main focus my whole life when I wrestled. I never had a great offense but you could not take me down, you could not hold me down. Iím going to use that.

ďItís very important to stay off the ground. Iím not trying to go in there and wrestle with Khabib. I donít think I can beat him in a wrestling match because I havenít focused on wrestling like that to win a wrestling match. Iíve constantly worked on my defense. Thatís never gone away.Ē

If Nurmagomedov is going to ultimately out wrestle Gaethje, he just doesnít want to allow the Dagestani born champion to control one very specific aspect of the fight, which is how he typically drags his opponents to the ground.

ďI have to focus on not being on the fence, not being taken down,Ē Gaethje explained. ďIf I do get taken down, Iíve got to make him work like his life depends on it.

ďIf he does take me down, I need to make sure that I threaten him with something up the middle is going to make him hesitate the next time. Thatís what Iíll be in there doing.Ē

While wrestling may be Nurmagomedovís primary focus, Gaethje knows his only job is inflicting as much suffering on his opponent as possible.

Whether that means a first round knockout or a 25-minute war, Gaethje promises to give Nurmagomedov everything he can handle Ö and more.

ďIím going to try to beat him into submission,Ē Gaethje said. ďI want him to quit. I want him to know Iím the superior athlete, the superior man. Thatís the goal of this game.Ē
So Gaethje wants to pull a Roman Reigns from the last Clash show, it seems.
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