For the biggest fight in UFC history between Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 229, you have a high-level striker with unshakeable confidence facing off against arguably one of the most ruthless wrestlers/grapplers in MMA.
As such, we are going to ask two talented wrestlers and two talented strikers their takes on both the physical and mental keys to victory in the fight.
I chose to focus my questions mainly to fighters at Hard Knocks 365 in Florida. This is a gym known for two things: world-class striking with Henri Hooft and elite wrestling with Greg Jones and Kami Barzini which has yielded them over 30 UFC and Bellator fighters.
As a result, they attract the gold standard in both disciplines. Today, we sit down with elite strikers like light heavyweights Volkan Oezdemir and Linton Vassell. We spoke to two wrestlers that spend time at Hard Knocks as well, with four-time Division-1 All-American and 9-0 Bellator Fighter Logan Storley and Chris Wade, NCAA All-American and current PFL Standout.
I also asked Nurmagomedov’s teammate at American Kickboxing Academy, Kyle Crutchmer, his thoughts on the fight. Crutchmer is an undefeated prospect out of AKA and a former All-American wrestler out of Oklahoma State University.