Khabib Effect: Islam Makhachev reveals change of stance with mentor present at UFC 302

Lightweight champion highlights improvements by having division legend in his corner at the weekend

Khabib (right) and Makhachev are childhood friends. Photo: Reproduction/Instagram

The legendary Khabib Nurmagomedov is confirmed as one of the coaches who will support Islam makhachev fighting in UFC 302. In conversation with the press at 'half day', the lightweight champion (up to 70,3kg.) evaluated the changes with the presence of the icon in his corner. The Russian guaranteed improvements in his game.

“It has a lot of meaning. Khabib's presence improves my striking by 20%, my wrestling by 20%. It's always incredible to have Khabib in the corner. He advises me for many fights. I remember the fight against Gleison Tibau, when he asked me to try the hook. I used it and won. Against Dan Hooker, it was his tip to submit with an armbar. (…) Having Khabib is not just good for me, but for everyone,” said Makhachev.


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No UFC 302, Islam holds his first fight in 2024. Against Dustin poirier, the Russian is looking to add his third title defense.

On the other hand, the North American tries, for the third time, to take the absolute leadership of a category in the UFC. The 'Diamond' failed on two occasions, losing once to Khabib and once to Charles of the Bronx.


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