Zabit: "I will do everything to become a champion"

October 20, 2019

In early September, rumors spread around the network that, due to health problems, Magomedsharipov would not be able to speak at a tournament in the United States, and a little later the fighter himself confirmed this information. But there is a silver lining – it so happened that the approximate dates for the return of the Russian coincided with the UFC tournament in Moscow. Of course, the featherweight gladly accepted the opportunity to address his native audience.

– Tell me why you still could not speak at the tournament in Boston? There were various rumors about infection and illness, let’s finally clarify what happened.

– I felt very ill right during the flight from Moscow to New York. Upon arrival, American doctors diagnosed with severe inflammation of the lymphatic vessels. I really lay for several days, almost getting out of bed, could not step on my foot. After some time, we flew to Las Vegas to the UFC Institute, there I was examined, prescribed medications, including a course of strong antibiotics.

After treatment, the team and I realized that my condition after the illness is very far from ideal. And after antibiotics, it’s difficult to get into shape. Therefore, they turned to the UFC leadership with a request to postpone the battle.

– You yourself asked to postpone the match to a tournament in Moscow or was it an initiative of the UFC?

– There were no conditions about Moscow. We asked just to give time for recovery from illness. And in the UFC they themselves decided to put our fight with Katter in the Moscow card.

– Inflammation and further treatment will not affect your current form?

– At the moment, we are slowly gaining momentum in training, we are trying to ensure that everything is in order for the battle.

– There is no disappointment that you are not fighting in the main battle of the evening?

– To fight in the main card in the co-main battle of the evening is no less honorable.

– Katter is below you in the ranking – why did you initially agree to fight with him?

– All higher rated rivals have already been involved, or their fights were in development with other rivals, but have not yet been officially announced. I would never agree to fight with my teammate and friend Frankie Edgar. It did not make sense to wait for one of the others to fight among themselves and then go out to battle with me. My break is already too long after the last fight with Stevens.

So Katter is the best option for me at the moment. Just like me for him. That is why he agreed to postpone the battle, for which special thanks to him.

– There were rumors about your fight with Ortega. How real was this fight?

– Yes, all these conversations reached me that our fight was supposedly planned in early August, but that would be unlikely. Too little time has passed since Ramadan so that I can get in good shape to fight with such an opponent.

– Not so long ago, your old friend Yair Rodriguez had a very strange fight against Jeremy Stevens. Have you watched this fight? What do you think about it? Who will win the rematch?

– I didn’t watch the fight, I learned the result from the news. I don’t think Rodriguez did it on purpose, nor do I see any reason to pretend to be Stevens. Coincidence, no more. I think in Boston they will be able to complete what they started.

– In an interview, Rodriguez said that sooner or later your paths will intersect with him. Would you be interested in such a duel?

– Of course, I’m more interested in the fight with those who are higher than me in the rating in order to get closer to the belt. But I do not exclude that a fight with Rodriguez is possible, that UFC matchmakers will want to organize it anyway. We have some background with him, the denouement of which will be interesting to people.

– What will happen after your fight in Moscow? Will you rely solely on the title fight or can you fight with Aldo or with the loser in the battle of Holloway and Volkanovsky?

– I don’t look forward. Now the main thing is to win the battle against Katter in Moscow. In case of victory, of course, I would like to fight for the title. And there, as a guide, it will decide.

– Who will win the battle of Holloway vs Volkanovsky?

– I think that once again Max will protect his belt.

– Do you plan to attend their fight?

– So far this is not in my plans.

– The next year can be called decisive? Will you become a champion.

– I can only say one thing – I will do everything to become one.

– Fight in Moscow will not put additional pressure on you? Or, on the contrary, is it encouraging?

– Performing in Moscow is very honorable and very exciting at the same time. I know that a lot of people will come to support me. I am sure it will be the most powerful support in my entire career. This inspires and carries an additional burden of responsibility.

– What can the spectators expect in your fight at Catter?

– Everyone is waiting for my victory and a bright fight. I will try not to disappoint them.

– Contact your fans.

– Thanks to everyone who is sick and supports. Come November 9 at the CSKA Arena, it will be interesting.