The UFC 165 saw Sambo-based fighter Khabib Nurmagomedov taking on Pat Healy in a lightweight bout as part of the pay-per-view event's main card. In a bout which likely shakes up the divisional rankings, Nurmagomedov was able to out-grind the grinder as he took down and beat up an experienced veteran in Healy.
After a back and forth opening round which saw both men trade shots standing, the Russian fighter started to take over in the second and third rounds, landing multiple takedowns and following up with ground and pound to earn a clear cut decision against a very tough and gritty opponent in Healy. He completely handled Healy in his own game, making it was a coming out party of sorts as he broke into contendership. He added to his already impressive unbeaten streak that currently stands at 21 bouts, but this time it's a notch over such a highly regarded top 10 fighter. The result: Khabib Nurmagomedov def. Pat Healy by Decision (Unanimous) (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
What was the high point?
I was very impressed with Numagomedov for most of the fight, but the highlight would be on the third round with him picking up Healy, running to the opposite side of the cage, then slamming him into side control.
What was the low point?
None really, the bout lasted for 15 minutes, but the pace was good, and the unbeaten Russian really delivered on the hype that comes with him.
Where do they go from here?
Khabib is 21-0 with 5 straight wins in the UFC, and following the fight he asked for a title shot. He's unlikely to be granted that, but I would really be interested in seeing him compete against a fellow contender on an equally impressive run in Rafael Dos Anjos.
Healy likely drops outside the top 10 win the loss and the previous overturned win against Jim Miller (for testing positive for Marijuana). I would be interested in seeing him against prospects on the rise, maybe someone like John Makdessi.
Watch it now, later, or never?
Later. It had its moments, and it's interesting to see Khabib win against high level opposition, but there are more bouts on the UFC 165 line up that you could watch before this.
SBN coverage of UFC 165: Jones vs. Gustafsson