Former UFC lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez made a strong statement about the current lightweight king Khabib Nurmagomedov.
According to Alvarez, there’s not a guy right now in the UFC who can defeat “The Eagle”. Not Tony Ferguson, nor Justin Gaethje.
Nurmagomedov and Ferguson were scheduled to meet on April 18 in Brooklyn in one of the most anticipated fights in the company’s history, but the coronavirus outbreak canceled the fight.
Later the champion was replaced by Justin Gaethje who is now on the verge of becoming an interim lightweight champion if he manages to beat Tony Ferguson this upcoming Saturday.
Asked recently by The Score’s James Lynch whether anybody can beat Khabib in the lightweight division, Alvarez said:
“In the UFC right now? No. I don’t even like the Tony match-up.
“I don’t think Tony’s strong enough physically. And Tony makes a lot of mistakes. Khabib’s not a guy you can make a lot of mistakes on. He’s an intelligent fighter. He has a certain style and you can make very few mistakes with a guy like that.
“And that’s what championship fights are about. A lot of times it’s not about the better fighter, or the faster or stronger. It’s the guy who makes the least mistakes. I don’t see the fight going well for Tony in the Khabib match-up.
“And if Tony beats Gaethje and manages to get through, I still don’t see it but that’s just my opinion.”
Alvarez added he is not sure if or when the UFC will try to make Ferguson vs Nurmagomedov again. The fight was curbed for a fifth time because of the pandemic after weight cut issues and injuries scuppered it four other times since 2015.
“I, like everyone, wanna see Tony and Khabib, but five times … it’s really hard to go a sixth. I mean, think about how much money was spent marketing that and how much money was lost. Even if they do make the fight happen they’re [the UFC] at a break-even considering how much they lost,” Alvarez said, laughing.
“So I don’t know, Justin Gaethje is one of my favorite fighters to watch so I’ll never, ever say that he shouldn’t fight somebody. I’ll watch him over Khabib any day of the week. He’s just fun to watch. I think Justin can knock Tony out. I really do. I think he has the style to put Tony away.”