In a battle between two grappling wizards Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev, Khabib Nurmagomedov is siding with the latter. Not only that, The Eagle believes Islam can invade Oliveira’s home country and beat him in his own country Brazil. The former UFC champ is highly confident of his protege’s chances.
Reports suggested that the UFC was working on a fight between Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev. The bout would have occurred at UFC 281 for the vacant lightweight championship. That particular PPV is set to take place in the UAE. But Oliveira wants the event to be in Brazil.
While Oliveira is currently the no. 1 contender for the belt, Islam is ranked behind him at the 4th. With both of their long-standing win streak, a bout between them for the 155lbs belt makes the most amount of sense.
Although the contest may be between Charles and Islam, any fight against Makhachev automatically involves his cousin Khabib Numragomedov. The former unbeaten fighter was instrumental in Islam’s rise to prominence.
Nurmagomedov is there in the corners for Islam’s fights. Hence, he knows Makhachev’s grappling skills the best. Talking about Islam’s chances against ‘Do Bronx,’ Khabib Nurmagomedov said,
“If they say Brazil, we’ll love this. Come to Brazil, fight with Brazilian champion and finish him with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu style. I love this. What you think about this? It’s going to be hard? I really believe Islam [Makhachev] can finish [Charles Oliveira] on the ground.” (h/t via MMA FIGHTING)
Is Khabib Nurmagomedov right about Islam Makhachev being able to submit Charles Oliveira?
As mentioned above, both Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev have gone unbeaten for a long time now. In his last 11 wins, Oliveira has managed to get 6 submission wins. He has submitted the likes of Justin Gaethje, Dustin Poirier and Kevin Lee. He was also close to submitting Tony Ferguson during their fight at UFC 256 as well. It says a lot about Oliveira as nobody has managed to submit Ferguson in UFC so far.
On the other hand, Makhachev has submitted 4 opponents via submission in his 10-fight win streak. The most impressive among them was the dominant submission he got against Dan Hooker. Hooker was ranked very high in the lightweight division at the time of the contest. But Islam made him look like an amateur as Dan seemed as if he was helpless against Makhachev.
Hence, the prospect of seeing the two going head to head in the Octagon is very exciting for the fans. A good submission is just as exciting as a knockout.
On top of that, both Makhachev and Oliveira have a very entertaining style of grappling. They look to finish their opponents whenever they are in a grappling exchange. As a result, it will be interesting to see who comes out on top.
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However, the question becomes, can Islam Makhachev submit Charles Oliveira? The 32-year-old has suffered 3 submission losses in his career so far. Hence, it is entirely possible that Islam submits Charles. But it will be a monumental task as Oliveira is not the one to go down easily.
Do you think Islam Makhachev has the tools to establish his dominance over Charles Oliveira? Or just like his previous contests, Charles will find a way to come out victorious? Let us know in the comments below.