Khabib Nurmagomedov celebrates following his UFC 223 victory.

Khabib Nurmagomedov celebrates following his UFC 223 victory. Photo from BBC.co.uk

Khabib Nurmagomedov says he has to maul Dustin Poirier

At UFC 236, Dustin Poirier beat Max Holloway by unanimous decision to become the UFC’s interim lightweight champion. The win has set up Poirier to fight the champion, Khabib Nurmagomedov. Right now, it is expected the fight will happen in September and potentially in Abu Dhabi.

Although Poirier just won the fight and is a very tough fighter, Nurmagomedov knows he will beat him. And, with a Conor McGregor rematch always there, ‘The Eagle’ knows Poirier is next.

“I think it was very good performance from Dustin Poirier,” Nurmagomedov said on the UFC on ESPN+ 7 post-fight show on Saturday (via MMAJunkie). “Honestly, before fight I think Holloway going to beat him. This is my prediction when you talk with friends, with father, with team, but he impressed me. Dustin has impressed me. I think he has very good boxing, much better than before. Every fight he becomes stronger, better in boxing on his feet. I think he deserve title shot. He already interim UFC lightweight champion, I am real lightweight champion. We have to fight. Now we’re working on this.

“[Poirier] have very good background, he have good ground game – not bad – he have good striking game,” Nurmagomedov said. “I follow him long time and versus me – I think I have to maul him like I do with everybody. This is what I have to do. I respect him like fighter, like human, but when we go to the cage I have to maul this guy. This is what I want and right now I am focused on September. Five month before fight and I think it’s going to be really good fight with him.”

In the end, the fight seems like it is next once Nurmagomedov is back from his suspension from the Nevada State Athletic Commission for his role in the UFC 229 post-fight melee. Know for sure, Nurmagomedov is ready to fight ‘The Diamond’ and believes he will maul him to victory.