One of the overshadowed results of UFC 225 was the victory of surging contender Curtis ‘Razor’ Blaydes over former title challenger and MMA legend Alistair Overeem.
This victory has Blaydes (10-1-0-1NC MMA, 5-1-0-1NC UFC) right into title contention. Blaydes was coming of a victory against former interim title challenger and another MMA legend in Mark Hunt at UFC 221 in February. Blaydes received some adversity in the first round getting dropped by an infamous powerful punch of Hunt. Blaydes recovered to win the later two rounds by takedowns to win the fight via unanimous decision. With a granite chin, wrestling pedigree which is important for MMA, combined with crisp striking at just the age of 27 has Blaydes completely set for a bright future. Blaydes has received recognition from an another wrestler in current UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov.
“I think Blaydes can become UFC champion,” Khabib told documentary producer Will Harris of Anatomy of a Fighter. “He has very good wrestling, he’s young, he’s strong, he’s hungry, he has different motivation. I think he’s the new blood in the UFC’s heavyweight division.”
However Nurmagomedov also revealed the fighter whom he thinks could beat Blaydes. Expectedly, he’s also a wrestler.
“I think only one guy can beat him. I think Daniel Cormier; he can beat him,” he said. “Other guys, even Stipe Miocic, I think for Stipe, he’s a bad matchup, because he pressures all the time, (he has) very good wrestling.”
“But, we’ll see. He’s the new blood,” Khabib said of Blaydes. “We have to wait (until after) July 7th (UFC 226). I think he deserves a title shot, more than everybody.”