Ilia Topuria laments ‘Dream’ fight with UFC icon Khabib Nurmagomedov: ‘I would have beaten him 100%’

Ilia Topuria talks failed dream fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov I would beat him 100%

Newly-minted undisputed featherweight champion, Ilia Topuria has claimed a showdown with former undisputed lightweight kingpin, the unbeaten, Khabib Nurmagomedov is his “dream” showdown, and insists if he ever got the opportunity to fight the Dagestan favorite – he would handily beat him.

Topuria, the newly-crowned undisputed featherweight titleholder, headlined UFC 298 earlier this month in Anaheim, California, landing a stunning second round KO win over former pound-for-pound number one, Alexander Volkanovski in a fierce grudge match.

And laying out plans to fight in his residency in Spain next, Topuria was issued a challenge by former title chaser, Brian Ortega who emerged from UFC Mexico City with an arm-triangle submission win over former interim champion, Yair Rodríguez in the pair’s rematch. 

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Ilia Topuria talks dream Khabib Nurmagomedov title fight

Welcoming the possibility of a future lightweight title charge against the incumbent, Islam Makhachev – Topuria stunningly revealed that his dream bout would see him take on Makhachev’s training partner, ex-champion, Nurmagomedov – whom he claims he would defeat to boot.

“I would be happy to enter the Octagon with Khabib Nurmagomedov,” Ilia Topuria said during a recent interview. “He had an undefeated record at 29-0 and he had an attractive record for me, then also history. He is worthy and [and] honorable champion for me. 100% [I would defeat him].”

Calling time on his professional career back in late 2020, Nurmagomedov bowed out of the sport with a stunning second round triangle choke submission win over then-interim champion, Justin Gaethje – to unify the titles and improve his unbeaten professional record to 29-0.

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Turning his hand to coaching at American Kickboxing Academy briefly in the time since, Nurmagomedov was also recently inducted into the promotion’s ‘Fight Wing’ of the Hall of Fame. 

Who would have won in a title fight: Ilia Topuria or Khabib Nurmagomedov?