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Why is Zabit Magomedsharipov often compared to former UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones?

Zabit Magomedsharipov (Left), Jon Jones (Right)
Zabit Magomedsharipov (Left), Jon Jones (Right)
Deepit Sharma
TOP CONTRIBUTOR
Modified 05 Apr 2021
Feature

Zabit Magomedsharipov is one of the most promising prospects in the UFC. The Dagestani fighter competes in the featherweight division of the UFC, where he is currently ranked #3.

'ZaBeast' is undefeated in the UFC, with a promotional record of 6-0. Zabit Magomedsharipov competed extensively in Russian fighting promotions before joining the Ultimate Fighting Championship. His professional MMA record stands at 18-1-0.

Let us take a look at what it is about Zabit Magomedsharipov's fighting style that ignites comparisons with arguably the greatest mixed martial artist of all time, Jon 'Bones' Jones.

Zabit Magomedsharipov has excellent striking

Zabit Magomedsharipov has taken on some of the best strikers in the UFC's featherweight division. He defeated these strikers at their own game.

Zabit Magomedsharipov's most recent performance is a testament to his exceptional striking skills. He fought an ace striker in Calvin Kattar at UFC Fight Night: Madomesharipov vs Kattar in November, 2019.

In a bout that kept spectators on the edge of their seats, Calvin Kattar and Magomedsharipov went the entire distance of 3 rounds to settle the score on the judges' scorecards.

Zabit Magomedsharipov is adept at mixing up his striking. His arsenal consists of a plethora of moves which he employs unpredictably. This is an area wherein a comparison can be drawn to the gameplay of 'Bones' Jones.

Zabit Magomedsharipov, much like Jon Jones, uses striking at different levels and outputs. He is efficient with his kicks, and lands with precision whether he his spinning, attacking the legs, or going for the headshot.

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Much like Jones, he frequently uses spinning strikes like spinning forearms and elbows to break his opponents down.

Ground game

Zabit Magomedsharipov lives up to the claim to fame of Dagestani fighters. As former UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov made clear on the largest platform, Dagestani fighters are hardcore wrestlers.

Local sports like combat sambo and wrestling are ingrained in these fighters, and the same reflects in Magomedsharipov's gameplay as well.

Even though Zabit Magomedsharipov lands diverse blows on his opponents, he does not shy away from using his supremacy on the ground. Out of his 18 career wins, the Russian has 7 victories via submission.

As can be seen in his incredible fight with Jeremy Stephens, Zabit Magomedsharipov finds ways and means to remain in control on the ground. He uses master tools like wrist control and tricky transitions to keep his opponents under control on the ground.

Again, much like Jon Jones, Zabit Magomedsharipov dominates on the ground to get into comfortable positions and execute ground-and-pound, in addition to various other submission maneuvers.

Jon Jones
Jon Jones

Zabit Magomedsharipov has shown amazing fight IQ

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Jon Jones is perhaps the fighter he is because of the mindset that he brings into a fight. Being able to use every weapon in your arsenal as and when required, making decisions within milliseconds and being patient are things that set the elite apart from the rest. These are attributes that helped Jon Jones remain king of the light heavyweight division.

Zabit Magomedsharipov has also depicted similar characteristics in his fights. As dynamic as he is both on the ground and while striking, Zabit Magomedsharipov has never let go of his wits during a fight. Even as Kyle Bochniak enticed Zabit towards a brawl in the final moments of their fight at UFC 223 in 2019, the latter kept his guard up.

Although he did showboat during the fight, as Jones has at times as well, Zabit Magomedsharipov kept his stance and wits sharp, depicting extreme professionalism and fight IQ.

It is due to this eveready mindset that ZaBeast is able to create as many striking avenues and gameplays as he does inside the Octagon. These qualities will surely come in handy as Zabit Magomedsharipov may face one of the greatest featherweights of all time, 'Blessed' Max Holloway, in his next fight.

Published 05 Apr 2021, 21:12 IST
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