Khabib NurmagomedovUFC lightweight Khabib Nurmagomedov began his career in the UFC with four straight wins over Kamal Shalorus, Gleison Tibau, Thiago Tavares and Abel Trujillo.

That reads as a blueprint on “How to build an MMA star in the modern day UFC.”

At 20-0, and after his most recent win over Trujillo at UFC 160, Nurmagomedov asked for stiffer competition.

On Saturday at UFC 165 in front of a packed house north of the boarder at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, “The Eagle” got his wish as he squared off with ten-year MMA vet Pat Healy.

Healy, riding a seven-fight unbeaten streak of his own, was coming off an upset victory over Jim Miller at UFC 159. However, the decision was ruled a No Contest after Healy failed a post-fight drug test for marijuana metabolites.

Needless to say, both men had plenty to prove entering the Octagon on Saturday night.

Round one saw Healy open with unrelenting pressure.  The Oregonian plodded forward with determination as the decorated Russian Sambo practitioner bided his time looking for counter opportunities.

As Healy pressured, Nurmagomedov began unleashing a bevy of lead uppercuts and wild hooks.  Two minutes into the opening frame and they were exchanging their fair share of leather.

As the horn sounded on the first five minutes, Healy was bloodied from the power counters from the Russian.  With 15 seconds remaining, Nurmagomedov scored an authoritative takedown that had Healy posting against the cage to regain his footing.  As Healy rose to his feet, Nurmagomedov ripped off a hook to the chin that sealed the round and set the pace for the remainder of the fight.

The second frame was more of the same, Healy pressuring with the Russian looking to counter and take it to the ground if need be.  This round was Healy’s most effective as he landed a few select strikes that hurt Nurmagomedov, and briefly had him on the retreat.

However, Nurmagomedov was able to stymie any and all potential offense Healy could muster by employing his all-world grappling prowess at a moment’s notice.  As Healy tired at the end of the second, the third round was looking bleak.

Round three was a culmination of Nurmagomedov’s poise and control from the preceding 10 minutes.  Having done enough on the feet to keep Healy at bay, the Russian took control of the final frame and limited a winded Healy’s attempts at a comeback.

The scorecards read 30-27, 30-27, 30-27, all for Khabib Nurmagomedov.  With his fifth win in a row, and his first over a Top 10 opponent, The Eagle wasted little time in proclaiming his desire for a chance at UFC gold.

“Listen to me UFC and Canada,” said the 25-year-old. “Ladies and gentlemen… 21-0, 5-0 in the UFC… please, UFC, give me a title shot. I’m ready.”

Although title talks may be a tad premature for the young grappler, there is little doubt he is primed for a star-making run in the 155-pound division.  With five quality wins to his credit inside the world’s premier fighting organization, and a steady increase in the difficulty of opposition, he may not be fighting for UFC gold next, but for this 21-0 powerhouse, he’s not far off.

Be sure to Like MMAWeekly.com on Facebook and Follow @MMAWeeklycom on Twitter.

view original article >>

Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Everybody Wants to Fight Khabib Nurmagomedov… To Whom Does the UFC Turn?

  • 24 days ago
  • 48 views

After Tony Ferguson had to withdraw, everybody wants to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov. Which way will the UFC turn? read news >>

Donald Cerrone vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov matchup appears it'll be limited to Twitter

  • 23 days ago
  • 31 views

Khabib Nurmagomedov and Donald Cerrone clearly want to fight, but it appears the matchup may be limited to social media for now.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Khabib Nurmagomedov remains on UFC on FOX 19 card with short-notice opponent

  • 23 days ago
  • 20 views

UFC lightweight contender Khabib Nurmagomedov will remain on next week’s UFC on FOX 19 event after all.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Khabib Nurmagomedov Gets New UFC on FOX 19 Opponent

  • 23 days ago
  • 334 views

Khabib Nurmagomedov's spot on UFC on FOX 19 was thrown into doubt over the past 48 hours, but he received a new opponent on Thursday. read news >>

UFC Fight Night 86 Results: Derrick Lewis Knocks Out Gabriel Gonzaga and Calls Out Roy Nelson

  • 20 days ago
  • 21 views

Former Legacy FC heavyweight champion Derrick Lewis continues to make his mark in the UFC. “The Black Beast” knocked out Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC Fight Night 86 in Zagreb, Croatia on Sunday. read news >>

Dos Santos dominates Rothwell for victory

  • 20 days ago
  • 24 views

Junior Dos Santos focused on the body to slow down and defeat Ben Rothwell by unanimous decision in the main event for UFC Fight Night Zagreb. read news >>

UFC's Paige VanZant closes Week 4 of 'Dancing with the Stars' with top scores of season

  • 18 days ago
  • 12 views

Paige VanZant was back on “Dancing with the Stars” on Monday night – and in a coveted position. Her Week 4 quickstep was the show’s main event, so to speak – and she came through with the night’s top read news >>

Khabib Nurmagomedov: 'I can't afford to lose' to Horcher (Yahoo Sports)

  • 18 days ago
  • 9 views

From Yahoo Sports: Khabib Nurmagomedov isn't taking Darrell Horcher for granted, saying if he loses this fight he'll "lose everything." read news >>

Khabib Nurmagomedov: 'I can't afford to lose' to Horcher (Yahoo Sports)

  • 18 days ago
  • 6 views

From Yahoo Sports: Khabib Nurmagomedov isn't taking Darrell Horcher for granted, saying if he loses this fight he'll "lose everything." read news >>

Viscardi Andrade notified of potential USADA anti-doping violation from UFC Fight Night 85

  • 18 days ago
  • 3 views

Following his unanimous decision win over Richard Walsh in Australia in March, Viscardi Andrade has been notified of a potential anti-doping violation.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>