“Fight for the Title Is Not Far” – Khabib Nurmagomedov Lauds His Teammate Saygid Izagakhmaev’s Spectacular ONE Championship Debut

Published 01/17/2022, 10:23 AM EST

Fans were expecting fireworks from Saygid Izagakhmaev since he inked a deal with ONE Championship in October 2021. The fans got what they wanted as the Dagestani fighter backed up his hype at ONE: HEAVY HITTERS. As a result, several MMA elites praised him, including his long-time teammate turned mentor, Khabib Nurmagomedov.

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Izagakhmaev clashed against an elite grappler, James Nakashima, in his promotional debut. However, the American fighter’s ground game was no match for the Dagestani sensation. 

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The bout resulted in the Russian phenom claiming a dominating second-round submission (head and arm triangle) victory. Furthermore, he rightfully so also received a $50,000 post-fight bonus, along with two other fighters.

Meanwhile, Izagakhmaev’s friend and training partner turned mentor Khabib Nurmagomedov was quick to praise his performance. It appears the former UFC lightweight kingpin believes a title shot for Izagakhmaev is in the near future.

In one of his recent Instagram posts, ‘The Eagle’ said – “It was a dominant performance and great debut in one of the best promotions in the world @onechampionship also a bonus in the first fight… You make me happy brother @saygid_izagakhmaev but it pleases even more, that you becoming confident and more powerful every fight…”

“Fight for the title is not far.” – Nurmagomedov continued.

“Very good start for our team in 2022. Thank you so much to the promotion for everything @onechampionship @yodchatri,” the UFC superstar concluded.

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Why was Khabib Nurmagomedov not present in the corner of Saygid Izagakhmaev at ONE: HEAVY HITTERS?

Fans were eager to catch a glimpse of Khabib Nurmagomedov as he planned to be in the corner of his teammate at ONE: HEAVY HITTERS. Unfortunately, it didn’t happen.

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Instead, the UFC lightweight GOAT watched Izagakhmaev’s fight in a hotel room away from everyone because he tested positive for Covid-19. ONE Championship CEO Chatri Sityodtong confirmed this piece of news in an interview with South China Morning Post.

Regardless, Izagakhmaev knew he had his friend’s support and delivered a dominating performance in his promotional debut.

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Do you agree with what Khabib Nurmagomedov had to say about his protégé Saygid Izagakhmaev? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section down below.

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Arman Khan

253 articles

Arman Khan is a UFC author for EssentiallySports. He began following combat sports when Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor competed in 'The Money Fight' in 2017. 'The Notorious' attracted Arman to the UFC, and he became an ardent fan of professional fighting as he could draw parallels with the action from his combat sports experience and break down techniques such as striking and striking defense lucidly for the casual fans.

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