Khabib Nurmagomedov believes that if Dustin Poirier can take Charles Oliveira into deep water, he will come out with the win.
Poirier will face Oliveira for the lightweight title in the main event of UFC 269 on December 11. This will be his second attempt at winning the 155 pound title after losing to Nurmagomedov via submission in September of 2019.
Poirier’s head coach, Mike Brown, recently explained that there are some ‘red-zone danger areas’ that he has to worry about with Oliveira and former champion Nurmagomedov agrees. While doing an interview with ESPN about his MMA promotion Eagle FC, he discusses how he sees it all going down. (H/T mmajunkie.com)
“You cannot go to the Charles Oliveira red zone,” Nurmagomedov said. “This guy is a real finisher. He’s very dangerous, and I think if Dustin Poirier takes him to the deep ocean like he told us, I think he’s going to win. But if you rush, I think Charles Oliveira is going to have a chance. My opinion: It’s 60-40 (percent) I think, to Dustin Poirier.”
Nurmagomedov continues by saying that because of attributes like his heart and cardio, he thinks Poirier has a slight advantage at coming out on top in this one.
“Because of his cardio and heart, it’s my opinion,” Nurmagomedov said. “But Charles is a very, very dangerous opponent and he knows right now he’s the real champion and because he has nine-win streak. He beat Tony Ferguson, he finished eight guys and it’s a very interesting fight for me. I think 60-40 Dustin Poirier.”
Since tapping out against Nurmagomedov at UFC 242, Poirier has earned three straight win against the likes of Dan Hooker and Conor McGregor twice. On the other hand, Oliveira has not lost in almost four years since returning to the lightweight division. In that time he has become the all time leader in UFC history in both submission and finish wins.
The full interview can be viewed below.