Conor McGregor has made most of the headlines, but Khabib Nurmagomedov remains the favourite with bookmakers to win UFC 229 in Las Vegas.
Nurmagomedov stormed out of the final pre-bout press conference over McGregor’s “disrespect” – the Irish fighter claimed “heavy traffic” made him late – in the latest in a long list of incidents that has made McGregor’s return for UFC 229 at the T-Mobile Arena in Nevada one of the most heavily anticipated Ultimate Fight Championship bouts in years.
McGregor’s attack on Nurmagomedov’s bus outside a UFC media day in New York last April added fuel to an already intense fire, but the brooding Russian boasts an enviable record – Nurmagomedov is 26-0 in Mixed Martial Arts fights. He won his fight over Al Iaquinta in New York to claim the UFC Lightweight Championship back in April.
For all his out-of-the-octagon antics, McGregor still packs a mighty punch. Having been stripped of his UFC Lightweight Championship title due to inactivity – most of which was the result of McGregor losing to Floyd Mayweather in a heavily publicised boxing match – the Irishman remains one of the most destructive MMA fighters to ever set foot inside the cage.
Can Nurmagomedov withstand McGregor’s unorthodox stand-up fighting style? Or will the unbeaten Russian prevail against an opponent for whom he has little regard? Not for nothing is UFC 229 expected to set pay-per-view records, as two of the most explosive MMA fighters in the world go toe-to-toe in front of a boisterous Las Vegas crowd.
With these two fighters generally employing different styles and methods of victory, there’s plenty of interest in the Round/Method double market as to how the bout will be won.
The short odds for both are perhaps understandable given that Nurmagomedov won his most recent fight over Al Iaquinta by decision, while McGregor has previously knocked out both Jose Aldo and Eddie Alvarez with ferocious displays of attacking power.
A question as simple as it gets – will the fight go the distance of five rounds, or not?
Odds mentioned above correct as of 3pm, October 5.