With Khabib linked to just two more career fights before reportedly hanging up his gloves next year, another representative of the Nurmagomedov clan appears set to continue his family’s legacy in mixed martial arts.
The 10-0 Usman Nurmagomedov is tipped to make a move to a major mixed martial arts promotion in the near future after impressing with a series of dominant performances in regional promotions in Russia and the Middle East and the man who has overseen the career of lightweight champion Khabib, Ali Abdelaziz, says that the 23-year-old can surpass the expectations of his cousin.
“[With] Khamzat, everybody always says, ‘where has this guy been?’ I’ve got 10 Khamzats,” Abdelaziz said in an interview with Asian MMA, referencing Khamzat Chimaev, the Chechen-born Swede who won two fights in 10 days on ‘Fight Island’ last month.
“The guy to really look out for right now that nobody knows about is Usman Nurmagomedov — Khabib’s younger brother [cousin]. He’s 10-0, all finishes. He’s an absolute killer. He’s a Muay Thai specialist and he’s Khabib’s brother, you understand? If you have the same blood as Khabib, you have good wrestling.
“I’m telling you, he is actually a better version than Khabib. He is better than Khabib. I’m telling you, people should watch for him. He’s an absolute killer. He’s got it all. He’s got the striking, he’s got the grappling, he’s got the jiu-jitsu, he’s got the look, he’s got the swagger.”
Whereas Khabib is known for using his suffocating grappling style to neutralize his opponents, Usman, Abdelaziz says, brings to the cage a more well-rounded approach as evidenced by the array of different methods of victory on his career ledger.
“He’s knocking people out with elbows,” Abdelaziz said.
“He’s the guy really to look out for. He’s a phenom. He’s a [combination] of Khabib, Jon Jones, [Israel] Adesanya. He’s a combo of all them.”
Usman Nurmagomedov underscored his potential last weekend with another stoppage win at UAE Warriors 12, taking just 40 seconds to beat Jerry Kvarnstrom with relentless ground and pound.