Following Nurmagomedov’s submission win over Johnson in November, and Ferguson’s decision victory over Rafael dos Anjos that same month, there was a ton of talk about the two fighting. For several weeks, the lightweight contenders traded shots through the media etc, before finally, they were booked to fight at UFC 209, March 4th.
Well, clearly Nurmagomedov hasn’t cared for some of the things “El Cucuy” has said, as recently the galaxy class grappler told FOX Sports this:
“If you watch when I fight dos Anjos, Michael Johnson, Darrel Horcher, these guys are my opponents but he’s a little bit different than other guys. I want to break his face because I want to teach him respect,” Nurmagomedov said. “When I fought with Michael Johnson, when I took his arm for the kimura, I can break it but I go very slowly, be careful because I don’t want to give him injury. Because I understand (the) fight was finished. I need only to go a little bit slowly and he tapped.
“If Tony Ferguson gives me this arm, I’m going to break his arm like Frank Mir-(Antonio Rodrigo) Nogueira.”
Now, it should be noted that Mir broke Nogueira’s arm, because the latter didn’t tap. So, hopefully Nurmagomedov would release the submission, if Ferguson tapped out to it.
Since Ferguson is a ridiculously, well rounded fighter, it will be interesting to see if Nurmagomedov can get the lightweight in that kind of position. So far, no one in the UFC has been able to shut down Nurmagomedov’s takedowns and top game.
UFC 209 will be hosted by the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.