Islam Makhachev is using the same sparring partner who helped Khabib Nurmagomedov prepare for his last fight against Justin Gaethje

Khabib Nurmagomedov and Islam Makhachev [Image credits: Getty Images]
Khabib Nurmagomedov and Islam Makhachev [Image credits: Getty Images]

Islam Makhachev will face Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 284 in Perth in what is undoubtedly the biggest fight of his career and the Dagestan native is taking no chances.

Makhachev seems to be training with Movlid Khaybulaev, the same sparring partner who helped Khabib Nurmagomedov remain unbeaten against Justin Gaethje at UFC 254.

Khaybulaev currently competes in the featherweight division of the Professional Fighters League (PFL) and won the title in 2021 after dominating Chris Wade for all five rounds to win a unanimous decision. However, an injury ruled him out for the 2022 season and he was unable to defend his championship.

Islam x Movlid πŸ”₯Movlid is one of his main sparring partners for the Volk fight #AndStill

In a recent video from the Javier Mendez podcast, the head coach of the American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) talked about why Movlid Khaybulaev is the perfect sparring partner for Islam Makhachev. He stated:

"Movlid is vastly experienced and he's a hell of a wrestler. He's a good, good wrestler. And he's smaller. Movlid is really good... Like I said, Shara is also a great sparring partner. They're different, but they're both great sparring partners. He's got it all, he's got what he needs for sparring."

Interestingly, Mendez also mentioned Makhachev training with Sharaputdin Magomedov, an exciting middleweight prospect who recently signed with the UFC. The undefeated fighter has won 10 of his last 11 pro-MMA bouts via knockout.

Watch the full video below:


Islam Makhachev previews fight against Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 284

Islam Makhachev will defend his lightweight title for the first time against Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 284 in Australia. According to many MMA fans, the 31-year-old rightfully heads into the fight as the superior grappler with a significant size and weight advantage.

While Islam Makhachev has welcomed the challenge of facing 'The Great', considering his pound-for-pound No.1 status, the Dagestani believes that Volkanovski will give up during their fight once he begins applying pressure on him.

The lightweight champion spoke to Niko Pajarillo of Fox Sports Australia and shared his prediction for the outcome of the contest:

"Charles Oliveira was not easy to submit too, but I'm going to try... If it's not going to be a submission, then I'm going to give him a hard time. Give him ground and pound, and when he feels like, 'Oh, this isn't my division [anyway], I don't want to take more damage.' He is going to give up."

Watch the full interview below:


Islam Makhachev and Alexander Volkanovski both have one loss in their pro-MMA carrers and have gone unbeaten since 2015 and 2013 respectively.

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Edited by David Andrew
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