UFC 253: A closer look at Hakeem Dawodu vs. Zubaira Tukhugov

https://www.mmafighting.com/2019/5/22/18636161/khabib-nurmagomedov-teammates-receive-reduced-suspensions-ahead-of-ufc-242 / https://www.mmafighting.com/2019/7/4/20682688/hakeem-dawodu-vs-yoshinori-horie-added-to-ufc-240
Photo: Esther Lin, MMA Fighting (left/right)
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Kicking off UFC 253’s main card is a fight between two rising featherweight contenders, Hakeem “Mean” Dawodu (11-1-1 MMA, 4-1 UFC), and Zubaira Tukhugov (19-4-1 MMA, 4-1-1 UFC).

Canada’s Dawadu, who started his MMA career by going 7-0 in World Series Of Fighting before getting signed to the UFC in 2018, brings an exciting style of fighting to the table, possessing heavy pressure along with power kicks and punches.

After getting off to a rocky start in the UFC when he was submitted in the first round of his debut by way of guillotine choke, Dawodu, has since rallied off four consecutive wins in the featherweight division.

Of Dawodu’s four UFC wins, three have come by way of decision, two of which by split-decision. However in his fourth UFC fight, Dawodu won by head kick knockout in the third round.

Tukhugov, 29, who happens to be one of UFC lightweight champ, Khabib Nurmagomedov’s main training partners, is also 4-1 in the UFC.

For Tukhugov, he’s had a bit of a rough go in his last three fights, going 1-1-1. But having come off of a win in his last bout by way of first round knockout, he seems to be hitting his stride as a real UFC featherweight contender.

Like Dawodu, Tukhugov, possesses a very heavy pressure based style as well. Mixing it up often with kicks, punches, and lots of wrestling exchanges, it is fair to say that Tukhugov will likely be the favorite in this fight.

With the X factor of Tukhugov having access to training with arguably the best wrestler in MMA to date in Nurmagomedov, he will likely look to exploit his opponent by taking him down repeatedly, and wearing him down with heavy ground and pound and submission attempts.

Although Dawodu is a complete and well-rounded fighter, he has shown weakness when it comes to his ground game, and this happens to be where his opponent excels. This will be a matchup between two opposing styles of fighting which should make for a very exciting fight.

Tune in to UFC 253’s main card this Sat., Sept. 26, only on Pay-Per-View, and watch these two exciting fighters kick off a great night of fights.

Prediction: Tukhugov via TKO

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