Conor McGregor vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov has the potential to be the biggest fight in UFC history. It’s also a throwback to the classic striker vs. grappler dynamic, with McGregor’s knockout power and Khabib’s wrestling at the forefront of the fight. But according to McGregor’s friend and jiu jitsu training partner Dillon Danis (a multiple time IBJJF champion), Conor may actually be better on the ground than Khabib.
”Conor could beat Khabib in a grappling match,” Danis told Ariel Helwani on Helwani’s MMA Show. “I think if you put them in a grappling match like ADCC, I think people would be surprised. Conor is a special athlete. The way he moves his body. He has the ability to move in certain ways and make passes and stuff. He’s a really good athlete.”
Danis seems surprised that people are even doubting McGregor after he passed the test that was Chad Mendes’ wresting back in 2015.
”Chad Mendes is a better wrestler than Khabib,” he said. “What credentials does Khabib have in wrestling? Maybe in sambo. Chad Mendes was second in NCAA.”
But the obvious plan is to stay off the ground against “The Eagle” and finish him on the feet. That shouldn’t be a problem for McGregor, according to Dillon.
“Michael Johnson caught Khabib,” Danis said simply. “Michael Johnson is not at the level that Conor is.”
As for Danis and his future in MMA, he’s hoping to build on his 1-0 record in Bellator at their next New York event just a week after McGregor’s fight at UFC 229.
“That’s what we’re aiming for,” he said. “We’ve talked about dates, we just haven’t talked about names. I haven’t decided yet.”