Oddsmakers Have Made Khabib Nurmagamedov The Early Favourite to Beat Conor McGregor… But Are They Right?
Unless you live on a deserted island with no Wi-Fi, you’ll know now that Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagamedov are going to fight. Yes, the gruesome twosome has been booked to throw down on October 6 in the T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas. Finally, we’ll get a chance to see them put an end to their grudge.
The pair will compete for the UFC lightweight title. Khabib is, of course, the champion, while McGregor was infamously stripped of both his titles without defending them, due to inactivity. Their toxic rivalry will finally decide who is the division’s most elite fighter.
Oddsmakers have of course already started releasing odds for the fight. Right now, as it stands, Nurmagamedov is the bookie’s favorite to win the fight. However, in polls carried out by Fox, ESPN, and the UFC, the majority of fans believe that McGregor will win. Who do you think will have the edge? Let’s break it down.
Early odds by Bovada have Khabib Nurmagamedov as a -175 favorite to beat the Notorious. Meanwhile, McGregor is a +145 underdog. There’s obviously a few good reasons for this. The Irishman hasn’t appeared in the octagon since taking the lightweight title from Eddie Alvarez back in 2016. Will ring rust effect his performance.
Meanwhile, Nurmagamedov is seen by many to be his kryptonite. He’s got a phenomenal record of 26-0, with 10 wins coming in the UFC. That’s absolutely ludicrous in MMA, where it is so difficult to stay unbeaten. It’s not surprising that he’s the early favorite.
— UFC (@ufc) August 3, 2018
Difficult to Call
This is a classic stylistic match-up between striker and grappler. Nobody is entirely certain who will win, but most people believe that it will go one of two ways. The first is that Nurmagamedov succeeds in taking McGregor down, after ruthless pressure, and beating down on him for the full fight, taking it by TKO or decision.
The alternative is that McGregor will catch Khabib with a powerful left hand and send him to sleep in the first or second round. The biggest unknown quantity in McGregor’s game is how his takedown defense has developed. We saw Chad Mendes take him down at ease, back in 2015, raining down elbows. Khabib does that even better.
Al Iaquinta showed though, that Khabib has holes in his game. If – and it’s a massive if – Khabib’s takedown attempts can be stuffed, then McGregor has an overwhelming advantage on the feet. It’s such a fascinating match-up.
Who Will Win?
Who do you think will win? One thing is certain, there’s going to be a surge of bets on McGregor, so expect those odds to plummet as the fight gets closer. If you want to place some money on the Notorious, there’s no time like the present.
This is set to be one of the most intriguing battles in MMA history – and probably the biggest pay-per-view. Any UFC fan who says they aren’t excited is probably just trying to be a hipster. Not having it.