Prospect in the Spotlight (Dec 23-24): Islam Omarov

Introduction

Saturday, Friday 23rd, Russian featherweight prospect Islam Omarov will be in action for ACA, where he will be looking continue his winning ways against Alikhan Suleymanov. He will be looking for another win, as Omarov looks to inch closer to a contract with the UFC. He represents an unknown camp in MMA. Let’s take a closer look at this prospect as this week’s “Prospect Spotlight.”

Strengths

Wrestling: I know guys, it’s shocking. A guy from Dagestan in the sport of mixed martial arts has a strong wrestling game in the cage. Omarov is a power wrestler that has the explosiveness and physical strength to grab takedowns with ease. I have not seen too many guys who have fought Omarov that have been able to defend his takedown. Whether upright against the cage or in a scramble, Omarov is outstanding wrestler.

Top Grappling: Once on the mat, Omarov is a dominator from the top position. Most guys don’t get up from under him or are able to reverse position. Once on top, Omarov has a combination of strong ground-and-pound and submission skills, though most of his recent fights go to decision (albeit clear-cut decisions). He also has nasty choking power, which is what has led to several of his finishes. Omarov is certainly well-rounded on the ground.

Needs Improvement

Unknown…for Now: Omarov has solid striking to go along with his wrestling and submissions. His cardio has looked solid. He is tough as nails and aggressive. There isn’t a lot of holes I am seeing in Omarov’s game right now.

Outlook

Top-15 in UFC: Omarov is certainly a top prospect outside the UFC and is definitely a fighter that would be a contender at the highest level. He is modeled in the stylings of the Nurmagomedov’s and other guys from that region that have cracked the top echelon of the UFC/Bellator/etc. I think that if he’s able to get to the UFC, he’s a guy that would climb the ladder and potentially get into title contention. That’s how highly I think of him, but now he has a very tough test in the main event of ACA against Alikhan Suleymanov.

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