Justin Gaethje Prioritizes Entertainment Over Winning

Throughout his MMA, Justin Gaethje has shown a tendency to walk down his opponents in an attempt to get them into striking range. If he is successful, Justin will throw a few leg kicks to start the process of limiting the mobility of the opponent. For example, if Justin is facing an orthodox fighter, he will attack the lead left leg by throwing a right outside kick mixed with an occasioned left inside kick. On the other hand, if Gaethje faces a southpaw, he will attack the lead right leg by throwing a right inside kick mixed with an occasioned left outside kick. Once Justin Gaethje is done throwing the initial sequence of leg kicks, he will stand in place and cover up his face until the opponent completes the counter-attack. After the opponent completes the counter-attack, Justin will restart the process of throwing leg kicks. Eventually, the fight comes down to which fighter can withstand the most punishment.

However, one can argue Justin Gaethje’s fighting style has been the catalyst for his losses in MMA. This is because every time he moves forward to close the distance, Justin always maintains his hands at or above the jawline. Due to this, Gaethje is regularly giving his opponents an opportunity to land punches to the body without resistance. For instance, Eddie Alvarez threw a lot of hooks and uppercuts to the body whenever Justin Gaethje stopped throwing his leg kicks. The body punches kept zapping Justin of energy to the point where his body gave out in the third round from one final blow.

Eddie Alvarez vs Justin Gaethje Fight Video UFC 218

Due to this, one would assume that Justin Gaethje prioritizes having entertaining fights over winning because if he truly cared about winning; Gaethje would circle out after throwing leg kicks. Circling out would reduce the opponent’s ability to land a counter attack because Gaethje wouldn’t be within striking range. Furthermore, it would force the opponent to waste a bit of energy dragging the damaged leg around. Once he gets out of range, he can pick a spot in the octagon to wait for the opponent, and when he gets there, Justin can restart the process of throwing leg kicks and circling out. If Justin Gaethje can successfully implement the game plan for the first half of the fight, the opponent should become more of a stationary target in the latter half. As a result, he should have the opportunity to stand his ground and throw more power punches.

Max Holloway Should Be A Tough Opponent For Khabib Nurmagomedov

Over the past 4.5 years, Max Holloway has shown a tendency to walk down his opponents in an attempt to get them into striking range. If he is successful, Max will repeatedly circle into the opponent’s power hand to analyze the hand placement of the opponent. For instance, if the opponent places the hands at jaw level or higher, he will give Holloway the opportunity to target the body and legs. This is because the opponent usually can’t drop his fists in time to block or deflect the strike. On the other hand, if the opponent places the hands below the jaw, he will give Holloway the opportunity to target the head. After Max is done gathering the data, he will look to exploit the areas that his opponent leaves open. For example, Jeremy Stephens would place his hands at about jaw-level for the most part which meant the body and legs were exposed continuously. As a result, Max Holloway decided to feature a heavy dose of the right jab and left kick to the body.

Jeremy Stephens vs Max Holloway fight video – ufc 194

Due to this, Max Holloway should look to attack the head of Khabib Nurmagomedov. This is because Nurmagomedov has shown a tendency to walk down his opponents in an attempt to get them into grappling range. If Khabib is successful, he will throw the left jab followed by the right uppercut to get the opponent to raise their hands. When the adversary raises their hands, it gives Khabib an easy takedown attempt; because his foe will not have time to get the under hooks in to stop the takedown. Due to this, Nurmagomedov can quickly drop down to grab one or both of the opponent’s legs and start pushing him towards the fence. Once this process is complete, he will regrip the legs to attempt a takedown to get the fight to the ground. If he is successful, he will proceed to establish wrist control and try to land some ground and pound. Eventually, the referee is usually forced to stop the fight because the foe can’t block the punches thrown by Khabib Nurmagomedov.

However, one can argue that Khabib Nurmagomedov’s fighting style will be the catalyst for his first loss. This is because every time he moves forward to close the distance his left hand is always on the rib cage area. As a result of this, the left side of his face is continually wide open to be hit. Furthermore, whenever Khabib gets hit on the left side of his face, he freezes for a couple of seconds because he hasn’t gotten used to being punched. Therefore I would suggest that his opponents throw one or two punches to the left side of his face and immediately circle out in either direction. This strategy will force Khabib Nurmagomedov to regularly reset and go back to square one since he seems to be uncomfortable with being punched. Due to this, Khabib Nurmagomedov will start chasing his opponents around the Octagon in hopes getting a takedown which leaves him open to more strikes.

 

Unfortunately, Max Holloway has spent the majority of the past two months rehabilitating the ankle injury which forced him to withdraw from UFC 222. On the March 19th episode of the MMA Hour, he said that “his physical therapy has been progressing well and he’s hoping to receive doctor’s clearance to return to action soon.” Due to this, one would think that Holloway will be in subpar cardiovascular shape because he has been in rehab instead of training to fight. Therefore, the fight should be extremely competitive for the first two rounds, with Khabib’s constant pressure fatiguing Max in the later rounds.

However, if Max Holloway had a normal training camp he would beat Khabib Nurmagomedov. This is because he would have the stamina to implement an in and out game plan for five rounds. For example, every time Khabib comes forward, he can target the left side of the face by throwing the right jab followed by the right hook or straight right. Once Max is done, he has the speed to circle out of grappling range before Khabib can shoot for a takedown which forces Nurmagomedov to constantly reset.

 

Tony Ferguson Should Be A Tailor-Made Opponent For Khabib Nurmagomedov

Over the past half-decade, Tony Ferguson has shown a tendency to walk down his opponents in an attempt to get them into striking range. If he is successful, Tony will spend a few seconds feinting the left jab or using body movement to analyze the hand placement of the opponent. For instance, if the opponent places the hands at jaw level or higher, he will give Ferguson the opportunity to target the body and legs. This is because the opponent usually can’t drop his fists in time to block or deflect the strike. On the other hand, if the opponent places the hands below the jaw, he will give Ferguson the opportunity to target the head. Once Tony Ferguson collects the information, he will dart forward and attack the open areas. For instance, Rafael Dos Anjos maintained his hands at jaw level or higher during the first round of the fight. As a result, Ferguson featured a lot of right kicks aimed at the midsection and legs.

Due to this, Tony Ferguson should look to attack the head of Khabib Nurmagomedov. This is because Nurmagomedov has shown a tendency to walk down his opponents in an attempt to get them into grappling range. If Khabib is successful, he will throw the left jab followed by the right uppercut to get the opponent to raise their hands. When the adversary raises their hands, it gives Khabib an easy takedown attempt; because his foe will not have time to get the under hooks in to stop the takedown. Due to this, Nurmagomedov can quickly drop down to grab one or both of the opponent’s legs and start pushing him towards the fence. Once this process is complete, he will regrip the legs to attempt a takedown to get the fight to the ground. If he is successful, he will proceed to establish wrist control and try to land some ground and pound. Eventually, the referee is usually forced to stop the fight because the foe can’t block the punches thrown by Khabib Nurmagomedov.

However, one can argue that Khabib Nurmagomedov’s fighting style will be the catalyst for his first loss. This is because every time he moves forward to close the distance his left hand is always on the rib cage area. As a result of this, the left side of his face is continually wide open to be hit. Furthermore, whenever Khabib gets hit on the left side of his face, he freezes for a couple of seconds because he hasn’t gotten used to being punched. Therefore I would suggest that his opponents throw one or two punches to the left side of his face and immediately circle out in either direction. This strategy will force Khabib Nurmagomedov to regularly reset and go back to square one since he seems to be uncomfortable with being punched. Due to this, Khabib Nurmagomedov will start chasing his opponents around the Octagon in hopes getting a takedown which leaves him open to more strikes.

Unfortunately, Khabib Nurmagomedov’s weakness should be negated by Tony Ferguson’s propensity to dart forward as he attacks. Every time Ferguson dashes forward, he will be within Khabib’s grappling range. As a result of this, Khabib can just duck down to grab one or both of his legs and start pushing him towards the fence. Once this process is complete, he will regrip the legs to attempt a takedown to get the fight to the ground. If he is successful, he will proceed to establish wrist control and try to land some ground and pound. Eventually, this style will drain most of the stamina from Ferguson thus preventing a comeback on his part.

 

How To Beat Khabib Nurmagomedov

Brian Ortega’s Obsession With The Guillotine Choke Should Lead To His Demise Vs Frankie Edgar

Throughout his UFC career, Brian Ortega has shown a tendency to walk down his opponents in an attempt to get them into striking range. If Ortega is successful, he will throw the left jab followed by an occasional straight right hand or lead left hook. Once Ortega throws the initial combination, he would retract his arms back towards his body and place his hands at about chest height. Brian intentionally puts his hands at about chest height because he wants to give the illusion that his head and body are wide open to be countered. If the opponent takes the bait, he will throw a counter strike from the edge of the pocket or take a step in an attempt to throw the counter. When the opponent decides to take a step in, Ortega will reach out to get a body lock or duck under to shoot for a takedown. If he is successful, Brian will slowly start moving his arms up the back of his opponent until he reaches the neck to lock in a guillotine choke. For instance, in the first round of the Cub Swanson fight, Cub stepped in to throw a counter left hook to the body, but in the process, he got caught in a body lock. Once this happened, Brian slowly started to move his arms up the back of his opponent until he reaches the neck to lock in a guillotine choke.

Cub Swanson vs Brian Ortega fight on UFC Fight Night 123

However, Frankie Edgar has most likely been made aware of Brian Ortega’s tendencies by his coach Mark Henry. As a result, Edgar will look to engage with Ortega in short spurts where he can land his strikes and immediately get out of range. For instance, he will feint or throw the left jab followed by the straight or overhand right. After Edgar finishes his striking combination, he should take a couple of steps back and circle out to the left away from the power hand of Brian. The strategy should force Ortega to reset by having to chase Edgar around the octagon constantly.