Fighting at home in Russia as part of Bellator 269 in Moscow, Usman Nurmagomedov improved his perfect record to 14-0 on Saturday.
Nurmagomedov didn’t take long to submit the little-known Patrik Pietila, in a fight that played out pretty much how the odds-makers expected. The Dagestani got the fight to the ground quickly, and once there, he dominated.
“I certainly planned fighting on the ground, because his reach was higher,” Nurmagomedov told media outlets including Cageside Press following the fight. “His jabs were very quick, so what I tried to do was to catch him, so I could fight him on the ground where I know I have an advantage.”
Criticism ahead of the fight centered on Nurmagomedov’s caliber of competition, and it would seem that he agrees. “I certainly want a top fighter next. Top 10, maybe top 15, it doesn’t matter to me but it has to be a top fighter,” the cousin of former UFC champ Khabib stated. While he’s looking for a bit of rest in the short term, “that’ll be just a week,” he added.
Nurmagomedov actually appeared to be taken by surprise when told Patricio Pitbull had vacated his lightweight title, paving the way for brother Patricky to face Peter Queally in two week’s time. “I don’t know. Maybe good fight,” he said when asked about that fight, skipping his translator.
Currently sitting at #7 in the division, Nurmagomedov added that “when the time comes to fight for the belt, I really won’t care who is there, who reached what. I know one thing, that I’m going to take that belt, and take it back home.”
As for his future plans, the Russian showed his sense of humor. “I don’t know about the near future, but right now, I’m going to be fighting a burger and a really big Coke.”
Watch the full Bellator 269 virtual post-fight press conference with Usman Nurmagomedov above. More coverage from the event can be found below.