Through out UFC history, it has been noted that Khabib Nurmagomedov is one of the stronger fighters in it’s 155-pound division.
While that may be true, Nurmagomedov however, has had his share of problems of making the UFC lightweight limit in the past.
Fortunately for him, the current UFC lightweight champion has done a much better job over the recent years in managing his weight better in order to make 155-pounds on fight week.
But if you ask Conor McGregor’s head coach Owen Roddy, he believes there still could be cause for concern with Nurmagomedov despite him being able to make 155-pounds, due to those aforementioned struggles he has had in the past of making the weight.
Regardless, Roddy claimed that his team are putting those previous weight issues of Nurmagomedov in the back of their minds going into this weekend’s UFC 229 event.
“It could be a concern, yeah. It has happened before,” Roddy told Peter Carroll on MMA Fighting’s Eurobash podcast. “Don’t focus on what is out of your control, you can only focus on what you have control over. We don’t know what could happen, anything could happen.”
Continuing on that subject, Roddy then recalled how Conor McGregor took the fight with Chad Mendes on short notice once Jose Aldo had to withdraw from their original meeting at UFC 189, and claimed that McGregor’s team could only focus on getting him prepared for that date at the moment.
“We had that happen with Aldo a couple of years back, we had a last-minute change with Mendes. It didn’t really affect us. We went straight back in, made a couple of minor adjustments, we went in and we done what we needed to do,” said Roddy. “Anything can happen in the fight game, but we can only focus on what we have control over and that’s getting Conor prepared, getting him focused on getting back in the cage and doing what he does best — that’s what we’re focusing on.”
Knowing Saturday night at UFC 229 will technically mark two years since McGregor last fought in a UFC octagon, Owen Roddy is adamant that the Irish superstar has vastly improved from the last time we saw him in MMA heading into to his much anticipated title clash with Khabib Nurmagomedov.
“It’s familiar, it’s back to the same kind of feeling as always. He’s always cool, calm and calculated, he’s intelligent when he’s in there — knowing when to throw and when not to throw. It’s like it’s back to normal again,” Roddy explained.
“Conor has obviously improved with his hands, they’re a lot sharper. His wrestling, his jiu-jitsu too, he hasn’t stopped training. He hasn’t fought, but he hasn’t stopped improving over the past two years since he [last] fought in the Octagon. He’s a far better fighter, but he still has that same mentality. He’s still as sharp as ever, he’s still intelligent in there as always. I’m just excited to see him back in there.”