Is Islam Makhachev Overrated? Insights From His 4th Round Submission Win Over Thiago Moises

Published 07/18/2021, 1:15 PM EDT

Islam Makhachev won his UFC Vegas 31 fight against Thiago Mioses via a 4th round submission. This was Makhachev’s 8th consecutive UFC win, his last MMA loss came back in 2015. Owing to his impressive performances in the Octagon many consider Makhachev to be the next big thing in the UFC.


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The Dagestani fighter is one of the most well-rounded fighters in the UFC and is often touted as the next Khabib Nurmagomedov. Many believe that Makhachev is even better than ‘The Eagle’ as he can match his grappling skills but is a better striker.


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Makhachev is currently No.9 in the UFC lightweight rankings. And many believe that is because many top fighters fear facing him. While Makhachev is certainly amongst the best UFC fighters out there. Many have often questioned if the fighter is really worth all the hype generated around him.

When people talk about Makhachev, it is mostly in two extremes. Some people call him the best fighter out there and the definite future UFC champion. Other’s often call him an overrated fighter who is riding on Nurmagomedov’s success.

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What do Islam Makhachev’s stats say?

If one looks at Makhachev’s stats, he must understand why the fighter is so highly rated. Makhachev has a professional MMA record of 20-1 and has finished 12 of his fights.

Makhachev has one of the highest Significant Strike Defenses (70%) in the UFC and absorbs the lowest strikes per minute (0.77) in the UFC. This stat clearly shows that Makhachev is amongst the lowest hit fighters in the UFC. The fighter also has one of the highest takedown defenses in the UFC at 88%.

While the stats clearly show that fighters find it very difficult to strike Makhachev, his striking and takedown stats are just as impressive.

However, the real question that many fans have is that whether the stats really tell the full picture.

Looking at the fight between Islam Makhachev and Thiago Moises

To understand Makhachev’s gameplay better, one can look at his latest fight against Thiago Moises. Going into the fight Makhachev was considered a huge favorite by almost everyone. However, what transpired inside the Octagon was different from what many would have expected.

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Almost all of Makhachev’s fans would have hoped that the fighter would end the fight in the first couple of rounds. However, that was not the case as Makhachev entered the fourth round for the first time in his career. And although Makhachev ended up winning the fight via a 4th round submission, many believed his performance was not up to the mark.

Makhachev found it difficult to get takedowns early in the fight and Moises even reversed his attempt a couple of times. Moises even took Makhachev down at one point in the fight and Makhachev was constantly finding it difficult to get the clinch.

Even when Makhachev had Moises where he wanted him on the ground. The Dagestani fighter found it difficult to take control and finish the fight. While obviously, Moises should get the bulk of the credit for his performance in the fight.

Many people believe that it was Makhachev who was the letdown and that he did not perform as expected by his fans.

What do you think is Islam Makhachev overrated? Let us know in the comments below.




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Paras Pande

395 articles

Paras Pande is a UFC author at EssentiallySports who is pursuing his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication. An ardent follower of the UFC, he has been covering the sport for 2 years now. Before joining the team at EssentiallySports, Paras gained expertise as an MMA writer whilst working with Sportskeeda.



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