Saturday, October 6th at 7pm PST, Khabib ‘The Eagle’ Nurmagomedov (26-0-0) will take on Conor ‘The Notorious’ McGregor (21-3-0) for the UFC Lightweight Championship belt. It’s been nearly two years since McGregor has entered the octagon and he’s looking to prove that he is still one of the most dangerous strikers walking the face of the earth. And the undefeated Khabib is looking to solidify his legacy as one of the greatest to ever enter the octagon at the lightweight class.
Mcgregor is known to put his opponents down with his masterful left hook and Khabib is known for his arsenal of striking options and elite grappling technique so, who is predicted to take home the UFC Lightweight Championship belt, Saturday evening?
Well, the good people at MMAFighting asked other fighters on the bill and their staff who do they think would be walking away with a win between Khabib and McGregor. You can watch replies from Anthony Pettis (21-7-0) and Tony Ferguson (23-3-0) who will be participating in the co-main fight in the response video above. As well as replies from Jussier Formiga (21-5-0) who will be taking on Sergio Pettis (17-3-0) Saturday evening and the undefeated Aspen Ladd (6-0-0) fighting in the Women’s Bantamweight division against Tonya Evinger (19-5-0).
After watching the pro predictions scroll to the bottom of the page and vote for who you think is going to win UFC 229: Khabib vs. Mcgregor below.
UFC 229: Khabib vs. McGregor Staff & Fighter Predictions
“Double knockout. I’m gonna keep saying it the whole entire time: I hope these bitches knock each other out. They talk enough shit. F*ck it, man. I hope they deal with what they gotta deal with and squash that shit. This is a man’s sport.”
“Honestly, before I came here, I wasn’t making a pick. Then I was like, you know what, f*ck it, I’ll make a pick: Conor. I gotta say Conor by knockout. If Khabib gets hit — Conor, if he hits you, you get put to sleep. But I like knockouts, so that’s why I’m going Conor.”
“I think Conor’s going to catch him. That’s what I personally think. I think Khabib’s a little too emotionally invested, and I think the way you beat Conor is to not play his game. Don’t talk to him. Ignore him. Kinda just step back from the situation and let him burn himself out. So stay away from him, know that he has too much power in the first couple rounds to be trading with him. Make the first fight, make him chase you, shoot low — do all these things and then really drag him down into the later rounds and win that way. I think Khabib is definitely [capable] of doing that, I just don’t know if he can keep him emotions in check enough to do it. Conor’s a special guy like that. He gets in people’s heads.
“This is the reason why probably I’ll never fight Conor McGregor. If I fought Conor McGregor, I would take my phone out and throw that shit away, and no one would be able to get ahold of me, and every time I saw him I would put like NASCAR headphones on and shit so I couldn’t hear what he said, and I would just laugh at him. Be like, ‘Bro, you can talk all day because I can’t hear f*cking hear you.’ Because trying, it’s like you’re going to try to combat the best in the world to ever do that. Right? He even got Mayweather. Like, just don’t engage him in that. Sometimes you win the fight by not fighting, and that’s what you would do. Don’t go against where the guy is the absolute best. Just step back and let him kinda burn himself out.
“If you ever need an example of that, you can look at other things. Let’s use the rap game for example, like Eminem. Right? He went after Trump and Trump just ignored him, and Eminem looked like a complete disaster, begging for his attention, and he won. Then he goes out and talks about a couple rappers, they come after him and he just smashes them, he just obliterates them. So if you would’ve just stepped away and just let him go, he’s so mad you ignored him, he makes himself look stupid. I think that’s what you have to do against Conor. I think you just have to ignore him, but nobody’s been able to do that.”
“I think Khabib’s going to win. I think that if he sticks to the mindset of, ‘Hey, can you stop 100 takedowns?’ — when he said that, I was like, listen, Khabib’s going to win. Because when he says that, he’s like, ‘Listen, I’ll give it to you, your striking’s going to be way better than mine. That’s fine. This isn’t a striking fight though. This isn’t a boxing fight, kickboxing fight. It’s an MMA fight, and we’re going to find out how good your wrestling is. You could stuff my first 30 shots. We’ll see if you can stuff the next 70.’ So, I think if he goes in with that mindset, it’s an easy win for him. But Conor does have a really good left hand, really good counter-striking, which is very dangerous.
“And the more I watch Conor, I’m like, this is some really high-level shit. You could say whatever you want, ‘Oh, he hasn’t faced wrestlers,’ and that’s fine, but that’s elite-level striking. Like, it’s elite elite. He could go in there against a guy like Anthony Pettis and easily put Pettis away. Right? Pettis has elite striking, but there’s just another level Conor has. It also comes from his confidence. His confidence is so strong, where he truly believes he’ll kill you in one shot, which makes him a very, very dangerous fight. But I’m going to go with Khabib as long as he sticks with that mindset of, ‘We’ll see if he can stop my takedowns.’”
“Khabib by decision. I think he’s going to dominate him.”
“If Khabib gets him to the ground, it’s over. If Conor clips him, it’s over.”
“I think Khabib’s got it. I think he’s gonna take him down. If he gets him down, I think it’s over.”
“I’m gonna have to go with Conor. I think Khabib’s going to take him down, yes, and I think he is going to batter him a bit, but Conor’s going to make him pay every time he comes in, and eventually, I think that’s going to add up and he’s going to finish him.”
“It’s funny because I really enjoy how entertaining Conor is, both inside and outside of the Octagon. Conor is a master at range and distance and accuracy, and it only takes one punch to end a fight. Sometimes Khabib can be reckless coming in for his shots, but once he gets ahold of you, there’s no turning back. It’s a five-round fight, and I suspect that Khabib is going to come out ahead in the fight and win.”
“I’ve been saying I’ve got Conor in the first three rounds by knockout, and then if Khabib gets out of the first three rounds, Khabib is going to maul him and probably TKO him in the fifth, something like that. But I’m kinda leaning a little more towards Conor just because I like the dude. I like him as a fighter, I love his style. But you can’t deny Khabib’s grappling, and he’s impressive too. I mean, he’s undefeated, an undefeated lightweight. He’s really impressive. So, dude, I’m torn between the two. But I’m siding with Conor just a little bit more.”
Ovince Saint Preux:
“Man, I don’t know. Conor’s got a good left hand. Khabib’s wrestling is next to none. He probably has some of the best wrestling in MMA. But at the end of the day, Conor’s mental game is totally different. I don’t think Khabib has been fazed by it, just as far as from what I’ve seen he hasn’t been fazed by it at all. So, I don’t know. The only reason I’d probably give a slight advantage to Conor is because of his mental game. The way he mentally gets prepared for stuff, it’s next to none, so it’s a slight advantage. But if Khabib won the fight, I wouldn’t be surprised at all.”
“I think rounds one and two McGregor, rounds three, four and five, Khabib. That’s why it’s gonna sell so well because nobody knows. I don’t think [it will be a] decision at all. I think three, four, five, submission or KO for Khabib, and one and two has gotta be a knockout for Conor.”
“It’s really hard to say because you don’t know if Khabib is gonna be able to close the distance and take him down. I’d like to see Khabib win. I also like what Conor does for the sport, almost don’t want to see him down. It’s just interesting. If I have to put money on it, I’m going Khabib, though.”
“It’s a hard one to predict. I think on paper, Khabib is the favorite. Khabib is the guy that, he’s more complete. He has the wrestling that is unstoppable. People can’t defend that — it’s crazy. He has the gas tank, as well. So he can push the ground and pound and the wrestling for five rounds at a rhythm nobody can do.
“But you can never count out McGregor. Those two first rounds, I think McGregor will be dangerous. Khabib has to take care. If he connects, I think McGregor has the power to knock Khabib out. But the further it goes, I think Khabib is the favorite, for sure.”