Not only is Justin Gaethje the most accomplished wrestler Khabib Nuramgomedov will have faced to date in the UFC, he’s one of the most dangerous strikers. But, the lightweight champ has a plan for how he intends to wear Gathje out and finish the interim champ.


Nurmagomedov plans to bring “mixed” attack

Gaethje has been tapped to face Nurmagomedov in the headliner of UFC 254, which will go down on October 24th. The powerful fighter has been tapped for the opportunity on account of a three-fight win streak, which includes finishes of James Vick, Edson Barboza and Tony Ferguson.

Due to Gaethje’s toughness, dangerous striking and wrestling pedigree, many have argued he will be Nurmagomedov’s biggest test to date. But while talking to the media recently, Nurmagomedov shared how he plans to wear Gaethhje out and impose his will (quotes via MMA Mania).

“I’m going to try wrestling with him,” Nurmagomedov said. “If he’s going to defend my takedown one time, I’m going to try second, third, (all the way to) 100 times.

Of course, I’m going to box with him and kick with him. It’s going to be kickboxing and wrestling – like, mixed.

My goal is to make him tired. I’m going to make him tired. This is my goal. Maybe in Round No. 3 or Round No. 4, my plan is (to) finish him.”

Khabib’s plan here shouldn’t come as a surprise. To date, no one has been able to completely shutdown his vaunted, wrestling game, which has delivered him 29 pro wins.

It will be fascinating to see, however, whether Gaethje can keep the fight standing or off the fence. If he can, and is able to land some heavy shots early, things could get really interesting.

Khabib believes he has the higher fight IQ

In addition to discussing his strategy, Khabib also had this take on Gaethje and how the fight will play out.

“I don’t think it’s going to be a chess match, you know?” Nurmagomedov said. “I think my fight IQ is much better than Justin Gaethje’s.

He’s just a tough guy. He likes fighting. He likes blood, you know? He’s like a real warrior.

But when we talk about fighting IQ, I think my fighting IQ is much better than his, you know?”

“I think Justin, he has a very good coach – just my opinion,” Nurmagomedov said. “He has a great coach.

If you can watch his last fight with Tony Ferguson, having cornered him, (Wittman) gave him very good advice.

I think he has a very good and very great coach. Of course, Justin can fight. He can go deep. He has heart.

But if you’re talking about fighting IQ, I think I have much better than him.”

It’s a fascinating fight on many levels, and it can’t get here soon enough. If Khabib records another win, and if he does in clear-cut fashion, he’ll take another big step towards the #1, pound-for-pound spot.

UFC 254 will go down on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.

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