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Tag: Rustam Khabilov

Ben Henderson Becomes the Latest Fighter to Mistake Rustam Khabilov for Khabib Nurmagomedov, Agrees to June Showdown With “Tiger” in Albuquerque

Remember how back in December, we reported that Rafael Dos Anjos had agreed to fight Rustam Khabilov while under the impression that “Tiger” was actually Khabib Nurmagomedov, the up-and-coming Dagestani grappling machine? Well, it dun happened again.

This time, it’s none other than former lightweight champion Ben Henderson who has apparently mixed up his Russians. After Khabilov was forced to withdraw from his fight with Dos Anjos due to injury (which in turn led to Dos Anjos vs. Nurmagomedov actually being booked), he recently took to Twitter to request a shot at “a fighter like Ben Henderson.” Henderson quickly accepted, but it was what he tweeted back that raised a few eyebrows.

“Seems like no 1 wants to play with u buddy,” tweeted Henderson. The only problem is, it’s Nurmagomedov, not Khabilov, that’s been having trouble finding opponents — both Nate Diaz and Gil Melendez have turned him down in recent months. In any case, Henderson vs. Khabilov has now been booked to headline a TBD “Fight Night” card on June 7th at the Tingley Coliseum in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It’ll be the UFC’s first-ever event in ABQ, home of the world-renowned Jackson’s MMA camp, where Khabilov trains.

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Khabib Nurmagomedov Finally Gets an Opponent to Say ‘Yes’, Will Face Rafael Dos Anjos at UFC on FOX 11


(The first guy to show any form of emotion has to buy dinner. / Props: Khabib Nurmagomedov’s Instagram)

It’s funny how life works out sometimes. You accept a fight against “the Russian,” thinking you’ve been offered a match against the UFC’s undefeated Dagestani phenom, Khabib Nurmagomedov. Instead, you find out you’ll actually be facing Rustam Khabilov, a still-dangerous but slightly-less-established Russian. Disappointment washes over you. But then, Khabilov suffers an undisclosed injury and you get to fight the Russian you thought you were going to fight in he first place. Hollywood couldn’t write it any better.

That inspirational story has just played out in the life of Rafael Dos Anjos, who was originally slated to fight Khabilov at UFC 170, and will now be fighting Nurmagomedov at the increasingly-stacked UFC on FOX 11: Werdum vs. Browne (April 19, Orlando). UFC officials confirmed the booking yesterday. Dos Anjos has won his last five fights, most recently a unanimous decision win against Donald Cerrone in August. Nurmagomedov has won his last 21 (!) fights, and has been inactive since September as other top UFC lightweights tried to justify why they weren’t fighting him. Dos Anjos may not have been on Nurmagomedov’s 2014 to-do list, but in the absence of any other options, this is a pretty solid matchup.

In addition to the heavyweight headliner, Miesha Tate vs. Liz Carmouche, and Donald Cerrone vs. Edson Barboza, UFC on FOX 11 will also feature a middleweight battle between the streaking Brad Tavares and Cuban knockout machine Yoel Romero, and a lightweight meeting between Pat Healy (aka, the last guy Nurmagomedov beat) and Jorge Masvidal (aka, the last guy Khabilov beat). If you’ve got predictions, fire away.

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All Russian People(‘s Names) Are The Same According to Rafael Dos Anjos(‘s Manager)


(All the same? Where would someone even *get* such an idea?)

Having logged over 2000 man-hours on GoldenEye for the N64, I can state with confidence that I am something of an expert on Russian culture. For those of you who have not heard of this mythical land, Russia is basically the Florida of Eurasia, a borderline uninhabitable wasteland where only the craziest, meanest, tooth-and-nailiest sonsabitches gather to grow beards and trade fisticuffs. Gaining entrance to Russia requires the exact same right of passage as The Salty Spitoon – no passport is necessary, they just ask you how tough you are and you better have the right goddamn answer.

And the people who actually choose to live there? Stoic, hard-nosed mountain men who chug despair and consume the weak all. Oh, you say you’re celebrating your birthday, 63-year old man? Fuck you, turn down the music or I break your face. These are a people who willingly eat lampreys. Lampreys, you guys.

Having spent a lot of (virtual) time in Russia, I have grown accustomed to the stereotypical light in which Russians are oft regarded by outsiders (*ahem*). So when I found out that Rafael Dos Anjos had only agreed to fight Rustam Khabilov at UFC 170 because he thought Khabilov was the UFC’s other Russian, Khabib Nurmagomedov, I was as outraged as you would imagine.

But that’s what happened, at least according to the Brazilian’s recent interview with Globo:

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Barnburner Alert: Rafael Dos Anjos vs. Rustam Khabilov Booked for UFC 170 in February


(When Keeping it Real Sarcastically Slow-Clapping Goes Wrong. Photo via Getty.)

After his promotional debut at UFC 91 ended in the most hellacious uppercut KO defeat of all time, it was generally assumed that Rafael Dos Anjos would retire from MMA and spend the rest of his life feeding bread crumbs to pigeons on a park bench while sipping broccoli puree through a straw. But lo, Dos Anjos would rise from the proverbial ashes two fights later, picking up a decision win over Rob Emerson at UFC 103. In the time since, he has been lawn-chairing motherfuckers left and right, compiling an astounding 8-2 record including a dominant decision win over Donald Cerrone at Fight Night 27 back in August.

While many of us expected Dos Anjos — who is currently riding a 5-fight win streak in the UFC’s most stacked division — to receive a top 10 opponent in his next bout, Fox Sports is reporting that Dos Anjos and Russian suplex machine Rustam Khabilov have verbally agreed to meet at UFC 170: Scratch That on February 22nd.

Khabilov exploded onto the scene back in December of 2012, suplexing the ever-loving shit out of Vinc Pichel at the TUF 16 Finale. “Tiger” followed the victory with a first round TKO via takedown-induced thumb injury over Yancy Medeiros (YAAAANCY!!) at UFC 159 and most recently outgunned former Strikeforce title challenger Jorge Masvidal in a FOTN affair at Fight for the Troops 3.

A sure to be barnburner if there ever was one, Taters. Who do you like?

-J. Jones

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‘UFC Fight for the Troops 3′ Video Highlights: Tim Kennedy Scores a Knockout for America, Rustam Khabilov Tries Some Spinnin’ Sh*t + More


(Kennedy vs. Natal finish, via YouTube.com/FoxSports)

Despite the enthusiastic and supportive Fort Campbell crowd, last night’s Fight for the Troops 3 event began with some bitter defeats for the handful of UFC fighters with military backgrounds. Army Staff Sgt./TUF 16 winner Colton Smith kicked off the main card by tapping to a rear-naked choke from TUF 15 winner Michael Chiesa — which earned Chiesa a $50,000 Submission of the Night bonus — while former Marine Liz Carmouche ate her second UFC defeat in a decision loss to Alexis Davis.

Luckily, Tim Kennedy saved the operation. The Special Forces vet fed off the energy in the room and tagged Rafael Natal with a long left hook that put the Brazilian’s lights out near the end of round 1, and won Kennedy a $50,000 Knockout of the Night bump. As he explained after the fight:

I had to wait for the crowd to stop cheering because I was afraid to emotionally commit to something and not do it for the right reasons,” he said. “They’re screaming, ‘Ranger up! Ranger up!’ And I want to start throwing overhands and blitz the guy. I was waiting for them to stop, and they didn’t stop. Then they started cheering ‘U-S-A!,’ and ‘Kennedy!,’ and I was like, ‘For the love of God.’

It had a negative effect on me because I was waiting and apprehensive. If there was any amount of pressure that could be put on a single fighter for a fight, I can’t think of a situation that would be more stressful than this.

By the way, Kennedy tore his quad in the last week of training camp, but as he told Ariel Helwani later, “There’s no way you’re getting me off this card. They would have had to shoot me. If they had to roll me up with a wheelchair, I would have got in that cage, I didn’t care.”

Check out video of Kennedy’s knockout above, check out full results from the fight card right here, and follow us after the jump for lots more UFC Fight for the Troops 3 video highlights…

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UFC Fight for the Troops 3 — Main Card Results & Commentary


(That’s the easy, confident smile of a guy who knows he could probably call in a drone strike if things aren’t going his way. / Photo via Facebook.com/MMAFighting)

For one night only, it’s okay to be a flag-wavin’ jackass. That’s right kids, it’s Fight for the Troops time again, and the UFC is in Fort Campbell with a card full of “us vs. them” matchups. On the menu for tonight: Army Special Forces Operator Tim Kennedy faces tennis legend Brazilian guy Rafael Natal, former Marine Liz Carmouche takes on Canadian BJJ black belt Alexis Davis, and Army Staff Sgt. Colton Smith puts the boots to a filthy, bearded hippie. Plus: A Cuban and a Russian, just to keep those boos comin’. Should be fun.

Handling play-by-play for the Fox Sports 1 main card will be our own Matt Kaplan, who will be sticking live results after the jump beginning at 7 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT. Refresh the page every few minutes for all the latest, and please shoot your own thoughts into the comments section. #murica

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Rustam Khabilov Faces Jorge Masvidal at ‘Fight for the Troops 3′ as Brazilians Continue to Turn Down Fights


(When you see it, you’ll shit bricks. Photo via JiuJitsuMania.) 

It’s one thing when Vitor Belfort turns down an opponent — he’s a former champ, a legend in the game and the only guy who was willing to dive on the grenade against Jon Jones at UFC 152. He’s earned the right to turn down a fight every now and again, is what we’re saying. But Edson Barboza? We don’t care if had the greatest knockout of 2012; who the hell does this guy think he is, Vitor Belfort?!

What are we on about? We’re on about the fact that Barboza recently turned down a fight with Russian suplex machine Rustam Khabilov despite the fact that, you know, he shouldn’t really be in the position to do that. While head matchmaker Joe Silva would have ordered Barboza lashed to the breaking wheel for such insolence, lightweight & under matchmaker Sean Shelby is apparently more forgiving. As such, Khabilov will now face Jorge Masvidal — who is fresh off a 2nd round, buzzer-beater submission of the previously undefeated TUF 15 winner Michael Chiesa at UFC on FOX 8 — at “Fight for the Troops 3″ on November 6th. The matchup was announced last night on UFC Tonight. 

It’s understandable that Barboza would turn down a fight with a grappling powerhouse like Khabilov, however. As we all know to be 100% true with zero exceptions, strong wrestlers are kryptonite to Brazilians. Khabilov has finished both his UFC opponents in under three minutes via vicious takedowns and slams (Yancy Medeiros was lucky to walk away from that fight with just a thumb injury. Lucky.). And given how notorious Fight for the Troops cards are for somehow delivering even more carnage than the average card, let’s do a little MMA Math, shall we?

Scared Brazilian + Russian Suplex Machine + “Fight for the Troops” card >….

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Rustam Khabilov Really Loves to Knock People Out With Suplexes [VIDEO]


(Props: Kalle Uusitalo via the UG)

Rustam Khabilov‘s UFC debut at the TUF 16 Finale resulted in a first-round knockout of Vinc Pichel; the fight was finished by the last of three suplexes. (Somewhere in Coldwater, Michigan, Dan Severn sheds a single tear.) But as rare as suplex-KOs are in this sport, it wasn’t the first time that the Russian lightweight has pulled it off.

On August 16, 2009, Khabilov faced Akin Duran at an M-1 Challenge event in the Netherlands. The fight lasted all of 28 seconds. Watch as Khabilov takes the center of the ring, corrals Duran into a corner, clinches, then drops Duran directly onto his head with a belly-to-belly suplex, knocking him out immediately. Duran never fought again.

As for Khabilov, he joined Greg Jackson’s team about two years ago, built his record to 14-1, then pulled off one of the most impressive Octagon debuts since these guys. Any ideas on who he should fight next?

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