Khabib Nurmagomedov opens as favorite over Conor McGregor for UFC 229

Unbeaten UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov (26-0) will put his title on the line against former champion Conor McGregor (21-3) on Oct. 6 in the UFC 229 main event from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. McGregor was stripped of the title back in April due to inactivity and Khabib won the vacant belt at UFC 223 with a unanimous decision victory over Al Iaquinta.

The win marked Khabib’s tenth in a row inside the octagon and it was his sixth by decision since joining the promotion in 2012. Conor hasn’t fought a mixed martial arts fight since he won the lightweight title with a second round TKO over Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205 in Nov. 2016.

Oddsmakers have Khabib coming in as the early favorite at -175 and Conor is currently considered the underdog bet at +155. There’s free sports bet no deposit opportunities available out there if one feels so inclined to wager on the upcoming UFC lightweight championship showdown.

Of course Conor’s only loss inside the octagon came against Nate Diaz at 170 pounds in March 2016, but he redeemed himself with a majority decision over the Stockton brawler just a few months later. Seven of Conor’s nine UFC victories have been by knockout and he’s clearly going to have a big advantage on the feet against Khabib, who showed quite a few holes in his standup game in his short notice matchup against Iaquinta in April.

That being said, Khabib is a wrestling powerhouse and there’s a reason he’s unbeaten in twenty-six professional mixed martial arts fights, with 10 of those wins coming by decision. Conor is definitely going to have a deficit in the grappling department against Khabib, who has also finished eight of his opponents by submission.

Conor will want to keep it standing and Khabib will want to put him on his back. In a time of multi-million dollar paydays and where the UFC hype train knows no bounds, it’s still going to come down to a classic grappler vs. striker matchup in this one.

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