Although the UFC hasn’t officially announced it, nearly every sign on the planet is pointing to the fact that Donald Cerrone will battle Khabib Nurmagomedov next. The bout will feature the promotion’s #2 ranked lightweight in Nurmagomeov taking on the #3 positioned Cerrone. The winner of the fight will almost certainly get tapped to fight the winner of the March 14th scrap between champion Anthony Pettis and Rafael dos Anjos.
“Stylistically, he’s going to be a terrible fight, man. I’m a striker, he’s a wrestler. So I’ve gotta get my wrestling on. I like fighting. I don’t give a sh-t. […] I’ll definitely gauge my training toward wrestling,” Cerrone said. “But you never know what he’s going to do. He may try – but I doubt it. His striking’s not top level. He’s probably just going to try to wrestle the sh-t out of me.
“I want to fight,” the contender relayed. “Not only fight on a date, but actually go in there and throw down. So, for someone that wants to just come and wrestle me and not make it an entertaining fight, I hate that on my side because I don’t give the fans what they want to see. I want to throw down.”
Of course, based off what Nurmagomedov has showcased in his UFC run so far, yes, chances are, he’s going to put his vaunted grappling game to work. After all, one would think that’s “The Eagle’s” clearest / safest path to victory. Cerrone is one of the division’s top strikers, and while he has a very dangerous guard as well, Nurmagomedov hasn’t had issues with top tier / BJJ black belt level ground games thus far. Case in point, in his most recent outing, Nurmagomedov worked his way to a UD win over dos Anjos.
Now, whether you think this means the bout will be a boring one, is another issue. If you’re a Nurmagomedov fan, or appreciate world class grappling skills, then you’ll probably enjoy watching the sambo master do what he’s best at.