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Khabib Nurmagomedov promises to break Tony Ferguson’s face and arm at UFC 209

Nurmagomedov plans to put a beating on Ferguson that he won’t forget at UFC 209.

MMA: UFC 205-Nurmagomedov vs Johnson Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

As UFC 209 draws nearer, top lightweight contenders Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson are becoming increasingly hostile.

It’s a fight that has been in the making for two years, with several bouts in the past being scrapped due to injury, and both men are now scheduled to lock horns on March 4 for the interim lightweight championship.

Ferguson, a winner of nine straight, recently called Nurmagomedov a ‘bully’ and said he plans to make him quit at UFC 209.

‘The Eagle’ returned fire on Monday, vowing to break his opponent’s face and arm when they finally collide in March.

“If you watch when I fight dos Anjos, Michael Johnson, Darrel Horcher, these guys are my opponents but he’s a little bit different than other guys. I want to break his face because I want to teach him respect,” Nurmagomedov told Damon Martin of FOX Sports. “When I fought with Michael Johnson, when I took his arm for the kimura, I can break it but I go very slowly, be careful because I don’t want to give him injury. Because I understand (the) fight was finished. I need only to go a little bit slowly and he tapped.

“If Tony Ferguson gives me this arm, I’m going to break his arm like Frank Mir-(Antonio Rodrigo) Nogueira.”

Nurmagomedov, who has rag-dolled most of his opponents with his championship-level sambo, pointed out that ‘El Cucuy’ has never faced a grappler of his calibre.

The 28-year-old said Ferguson is not prepared for his ground and pound and reiterated his plans to break his arm with a kimura.

“Yes he’s an impressive fighter. He all the time fights, UFC gives him ‘Performance of the Night’ but he never fights with fighters like me,” Nurmagomedov said. “He all the time fights with striking guys like (Rafael) dos Anjos, Josh Thomson, (Edson) Barboza, these guys are all striking guys. I am completely different fighter. He has to stay ready because I’m going to do what I do all my life, all my career. I’m going to do.

“He has to change something. Because he has to work takedown defense, he has to work to get up, he has to work to defend my ground and pound. He never had to do this — now he has to do this. Because if you don’t do this, I’m going to break his face, finish him maybe a kimura, break his arm so he has to stay ready.”

The winner is expected to challenge UFC sensation Conor McGregor, who won the official 155 lbs title last year, in a title unification bout in the fall.

UFC 209, which features Nurmagomedov vs. Ferguson in the co-main event, takes place on March 4 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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