Bobby Green still can’t wrap his head around how strong Islam Makhachev was when they fought earlier this year.
A strong pair of back-to-back victories for Green came to a halt earlier this year (Feb. 2022) when a short-notice opportunity arose. Makhachev needed an opponent for UFC Vegas 49’s main event and Green delivered on the save.
Unfortunately for the “King,” Green fell short as most have against the near-flawless Russian, suffering a first round technical knockout defeat via ground-and-pound punches (watch highlights). Having had plenty of time to reflect on the performance, Green believes he now understands why things went the way they did.
“I found this little video and it said Islam had a little trouble with drugs, but I don’t see people talking about him,” Green said at UFC Vegas 66 media day (h/t MMA Junkie). “He was saying that when he first came over that his school that he trained at in Russia, they just gave him vitamins. They’d been doing this since who knows when — when you start training.
“Imagine if you gave someone steroids from the age of 10, 12, 13, 14, 15 ... how strong you would be,” he continued. “People are like, ‘He was really strong.’ It makes sense now. There’s two people that I’ve moved around with and I was like, that’s interesting. I’ve moved with thousands of guys, that was interesting. I told my coach, ‘There’s something interesting about Islam.’ I felt it. That’s just not human. It makes sense.”
Green looks to get back in the win column this weekend (Sat., Dec. 17, 2022), taking on Drew Dober in a Lightweight showdown. Originally, the 43-fight veteran intended on fighting sooner as he was booked for a July 2022 tilt opposite Jim Miller until he was forced out of the bout just a week ahead of fight night.
Green tested positive during an out-of-completion drug test for Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), leading to a six month United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) suspension. He proved that he didn’t knowingly take the substance as it was found in an over-the-counter supplement that resulted in the flagging.
“If I can do drugs — our countries are different,” Green said. “Russia’s been banned for the Olympics, their country’s a little bit more okay with the drug use. We’re under strenuous drug stuff over here. There, it’s a little bit different. They’re behind their fighters, they want them to be stronger, they want them to be more manly, over here we don’t. It’s just what it is.
“Imagine if I could do that,” he concluded. “I would kill everybody. So, it makes sense to me, and I was wondering why those Dagestanis were winning so much. They’ve been bred to do this. That’s why you can train at nine years old against a bear. They’ve been bred to be better than us so they’re gonna win, I’m sorry, it is what it is. We’re a little too p—sified over here.”
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 66 fight card right here, starting with the ESPN+ “Prelims” matches, which are scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. ET, then the remaining main card balance (also on ESPN+) at 7 p.m. ET.
To check out the latest and greatest UFC Vegas 66: “Cannonier vs. Strickland” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.