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Can it be the toughest fighter in the world at this time?

In his stranglehold put a guy who’d trash-talked him months, assaulted his group bus, called him names, also explained to Khabib in detail how he’ll knock him out.

McGregor, who enjoys calling himself The Notorious, tapped that nighttime into the entry.

Khabib was the UFC lightweight winner then, but his first name defence was the struggle which catapulted his fame into giddy heights.

McGregor was the person who made people sit up and be aware of MMA with his antics and his competitive showmanship; moreover, he was also among the most accomplished fighters at the sport. Put all that together, and you’ve got the most-watched soldier in MMA.

From the octagon, Mcgregor seemed like a newcomer being brutally schooled by Khabib. He got punched in the face, kneed in the stomach, picked up, removed, elbowed, and pumped down–that the Irishman had no replies. However, the battle didn’t finish with the tapping; a brawl ensued between the groups of both fighters, together with the two Khabib and McGregor linking in, and being suspended for six months for their efforts.

On Saturday the 30-year-old Khabib will likely be returning to the cage at Abu Dhabi, with a 27-0 win-loss record, because of his next title defence from American Dustin Poirier, that had been forced the interim UFC lightweight winner when Khabib was suspended.

They’re strikers. Both of them are boxers,” Khabib explained during a conference call in Abu Dhabi. “I believe perhaps now Dustin is a much more whole MMA fighter than him since he beat lots of good men in the lightweight division and that I do not recall when Conor triumph in the lightweight branch. Dustin Poirier is a far better fighter .”

When asked if he’s worried about Mcgregor along with his entourage assaulting him, Khabib was dismissive.

“Frankly, I do not see exactly what you ask about. This man, when he triumph the previous moment? Why do we keep referring to this man? I don’t wish to speak about him. We’ve Dustin Poirier, we’ve got a lot of things, so please let us talk about real things,” he explained.

Poirier question

The’real stuff’ which Khabib is now occupied with is your 30-year-old Poirier. In his last two fights, he conquered Max Holloway, the current UFC featherweight champion, also Eddie Alvarez, former UFC lightweight winner. Poirier includes a 25-5 win-loss album, while one struggle proved to be a non competition.

“He’s a very good win series. He beat good men, and he deserves it. His expertise makes him hard. He’s got enormous battles against tough opponents,” Khabib explained.

The buildup to the struggle –respectful, nearly low-key–was rather unlike what Khabib, the current No. 2 in UFC pound-for-pound ranks, confronted during his final battle with McGregor. But that does not mean there’ll be any mercy within the octagon. “I feel this game MMA is about respect. We must respect each other. This is a demanding, unforgivable game. Your loved ones, your competitor’s family, most of the people are seeing. This is the most significant battle in the lightweight division because he’s the interim winner, I’m the world champion. If we respect each other, once we input the cage, we understand who’s your enemy,” Khabib explained. “If you struggle, you need to be like’I wish to become the best fighter on the planet, I must become the best pound for pound fighter. I concentrate on each competitor. Who knows, could be next week that I will complete Dustin Coirier and eventually become the No. 1 pound for pound fighter on the planet. Who understands”

Khabib was created in a little village at the autonomous republic of Dagestan at the south of Russia, in which the Caucasus matches the Caspian. The formerly strife-torn mountain area has become more famous for its generation line of martial artists, particularly in MMA and wrestling.

Khabib’s dad was in the military and is himself a former combat sambo winner who became a mentor. Khabib started training under his father at a young age.

Hailing from this joyful fighting civilization, it is just normal for Khabib to flaunt it, something that he does each time before about by minding a papakha, the standard sheep’s wool hat worn across the Caucasus.

“Lots of individuals understand me and they ought to understand where I’m from,” he explained. “When I arrived at UFC, they explained that my title is hard to recall so that I need to do something for the fans to understand me. My friends suggested that I must use papakha. Dagestan has a great deal of culture and history. I believe I’m part of Dagestani history. Perhaps 40-50 years after people will understand exactly what I did.”

To make his heritage, Khabib has depended upon the one discipline he’s enjoyed since he was a kid –wrestling.

His struggles follow a predictable pattern: He spends the first minute or so of around toe-to-toe together with his rival –his boxing is fast, robust and accurate, his defensive demeanour superb–but that is not his distance.

He’s merely using that opportunity to search for his introduction, that miniature opportunity where he’ll take his man to the floor and to wrestling land (he retains the UFC recordings of most takedowns in a game –21 from 27 efforts against Abel Trujillo at 2013). This can be Khabib’s space.

What follows is a brutal, ongoing and (thus far) inevitable siege in which the competition finds no way out of this clasp and is exposed to the beating of fists and elbows.

Going against Khabib, Poirier understands he is not the favourite.

“I’m travelling into a component of the planet where he’ll be the favorite. I would like to place a reduction on Khabib’s list for all of the underdogs around the world. I need to reveal if you’re focused and committed enough, you’ll be good.”