Sean Strickland currently ranked seventh in the UFC middleweight division will square off against unranked contender Abus Magomedov on July 1st. Since the announcement of the fight, many have questioned the reason behind an unranked Magomedov fighting a top-10 contender and a big name like Sean Strickland.
— MMA Junkie (@MMAJunkie) April 29, 2023
UFC middleweight Caio Borralho who was scheduled to face Michal Oleksiejczuk at UFC Vegas 72 this Saturday was heavily vocal about the match-up. He said
“I don’t know why the UFC is pushing this guy so hard you know. ‘Cause he got murdered in the [PFL] by an old guy. Now he’s [in the UFC], he faced a guy that was 1-4 in his last 5 fights and he got a finish. But I don’t see too much [in this guy], the UFC’s pushing him up the rankings with just one fight in the UFC.”
“Not just me, but a lot of the other prospects deserve it much more than this guy. This guy called me out after UFC Abu Dhabi, he wanted to fight. I didn’t even give it attention ’cause he has one fight…” he added.
Strickland himself tried to explain the reason for him to take this less-credited fight. “They said, ‘Sean, you’re going to be waiting for a long time for a top 6+ guy to open up or we will pay you a lot of money to fight this guy” sooo here we are,” Strickland tweeted. “I just bought a new motorcycle and I’d like another one… thinking a sport bike if anyone has a hook up?!?!”
Abus Magomedov career so far in the UFC
Surprisingly Magomedov has only had one fight in his UFC career till now. That fight came against Dustin Stoltzfuz back in September 2022. Magomedov won the bout in phenomenal fashion, knocking out his opponent in just under 20 seconds. That performance earned him an extra $50,000 in the form of a performance bonus.
That was surely a brilliant performance from Magomedov considering it was his first fight within the premier organization but fighting someone like Sean Strickland may be a step too steep for him. But with high risk comes high reward as well.
If somehow he is able to get his hand raised against an elite opponent like Strickland, it will probably open up a new wave of opportunities for him even fast-tracking his path to UFC gold.