Khabib Nurmagomedov: UFC legend only got in trouble four times, video shows


Khabib Nurmagomedov is unquestionably a UFC legend. His 29-0 record speaks for itself. This article could end with just that stat and it would do him justice.

Usually, Khabib's fights are full of him dominating and out-wrestling his opponents. However, a recent YouTube video published on October 5 by Martial Liam identifies the times in Khabib’s iconic career that he was in trouble during a contest.

As you'd expect, those moments are few and far between!

The first fight in the video was Khabib vs Michael Johnson, which took place in November 2016 at UFC 205.

Johnson fired quick and accurate punches to Khabib throughout the fight which threatened his undefeated record. Commentator on the night Joe Rogan pointed out that Khabib seemed ‘wobbly and hurt’ with his legs ‘not under him completely’ as he wondered how the fighter could turn this one around.

As per his strengths, Khabib continued to attempt to shoot for takedowns. Towards the very end of the first round, the Russian was successful at executing a takedown and unleashed a barrage of strikes to Johnson from the ground to try to find the TKO.

Johnson survived the round, which was a huge contrast to earlier in the fight, as Michael Bisping explained on commentary how he personally felt like Khabib was close to being knocked out.


In the following round, the ground and pound domination continued. The only hint of success Johnson got was transitioning into a submission on Khabib, but the strikes soon continued before the Russian himself locked in a Kimura for the submission win.

At UFC 229, Khabib faced the ‘Notorious’ Conor McGregor. The struggle in this fight came in rounds three and four. In these rounds, McGregor hit calculated strikes to the head and body of Khabib as the Russian fighter appeared to fatigue.

The fight became far more open as the Irishman capitalised on the lack of energy from the Russian, with both fighters becoming more comfortable firing strikes back and forth.

The takedown was the priority for Khabib, who managed to back McGregor against the cage, then sweep the leg and lock in a neck crank submission to make the Irishman tap.

The penultimate feature in the video was UFC 242 vs ‘Diamond’ Dustin Poirier.

Flurries of punches could be seen which forced Khabib into an unfamiliar position of retreat. He scrambled all over the cage before trapping Poirier against the cage with signature clinch and takedown technique. Round three saw a takedown attempt be reversed to put Khabib into a submission which he was held in for over 30 seconds. The Russian popped his head out and transitioned to lock the ‘Diamond’ in a choke to win the fight.

The final feature was poetically also Khabib’s final UFC fight. This took place at UFC 254 vs Justin Gaethje.

The American is known as a really dynamic striker and his counter striking is excellent. He kept his distance well which challenged Khabib’s reliance on his powerful takedowns.



Khabib began to pressure Gaethje with his own strikes to throw him off and open up ground opportunities.

Eventually, Khabib locked in a triangle which transitioned to an arm bar for the tap.

Vulnerabilities were rare for Khabib, but every fighter, no matter how invincible, has their off moments.

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