MMA DNA revealed last week that a fight between Brian Ortega and Zabit Magomedsharipov was in works for UFC 249. Former title challenger Ortega hasn’t fought ever since his loss to Max Holloway at UFC 231.
UFC president Dana White also confirmed that the pair will be fighting in April. With that being said, UFC 249 is being headlined by Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson, which means the Zabit vs Ortega will be a five-round fight.
Ortega revealed that the only way he would be willing to take on Zabit if it was for five rounds.
Just spoke to Brian Ortega (@BrianTcity) backstage. He told me he is aware of the Zabit Magomedsharipov rumors but nothing is signed and he's not sure what's going on. He DOES want to fight Zabit five rounds. Says if Zabit wants to be a champ this year, take a five-rounder.
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) February 9, 2020
“Just spoke to Brian Ortega ( @BrianTcity ) backstage. He told me he is aware of the Zabit Magomedsharipov rumors but nothing is signed and he’s not sure what’s going on. He DOES want to fight Zabit five rounds. Says if Zabit wants to be a champ this year, take a five-rounder.” Brian Ortega told ESPN’s, Brett Okamoto.
The fight will be the toughest of Magomedsharipov’s career as the Russian has never fought a five-round fight in his career. He also has had cardio issues in his previous fights.
On the other hand, Magomedsharipov is on a six-fight winning streak in the UFC. He is coming off of a decision win over Calvin Kattar at UFC Fight Night 163. Despite the fight being a main event headliner, it was only a three-round fight.
Zabit wants to fight for the title
Back in November following his win over Katter, he revealed that he wanted to fight the winner of Holloway vs Volkanovski.
“I’m 6-0 in the UFC, and obviously I’d like to face the winner of Holloway versus Volkanovski,” Magomedsharipov said. “I promise if I get that fight, I will be ready for five rounds.
“I wasn’t able to prepare fully for this fight because I had staph infections and stuff, but I promise I’ll be better next time.”
Meanwhile, Alexander Volkanovski defeated Max Holloway in a close fight at UFC 245 and UFC is in talks with the pair to make a rematch in June. So it’s highly unlikely that Zabit would get a title shot next.
Do you guys think Zabit Magomedsharipov can hang with Brian Ortega for full five-rounds?