While flyweight super prospect Muhammad Mokaev was dominant in victory this past weekend, he understand why fans would think his performance wasn’t aesthetically pleasing.
Mokaev improved to 2-0 in his young octagon career with a lopsided decision win over Charles Johnson at UFC London. “The Punisher” says that he has heard from many fans who labeled the fight and performance as “boring,” which is something he agrees with when assessing the bout through his own eyes.
“I’ll agree myself, it was boring,” Mokaev explained on The MMA Hour. “It was boring, but I did what I could. The guy is 10 years older than me and the guy is not somebody that is s***. He’s an LFA champion, he had a close fight against Brandon Royval — who is now ranked No. 6 in the UFC at flyweight division — he had a decision [loss] against Royval. He’s a tough kid. And that’s it, I thought I had done good.”
The 21-year-old kicked off his UFC run with an emphatic 58-second submission win over Cody Durden at the promotion’s return to London in March. Mokaev landed a vicious knee that badly hurt Durden, which ultimately led to the guillotine choke finish.
In his latest bout, Mokaev leaned on his suffocating wrestling game, completing an astounding 12 takedowns in 26 total attempts. While most fighters are hard on themselves, Mokaev is satisfied with his showing against a tough opponent, and believes when the opportunity comes to fight for the flyweight title, fans will be saying something much different.
“I’m happy. I’m happy with the victory,” Mokaev said. “Listen, people are always going to talk. They’re always going to say, ‘This is boring.’ If I get knocked out, if I do something wrong, they’ll say, ‘Oh, he’s s*** striker. He should’ve wrestled where he’s best at,’ and stuff like this.
“I’ll do what’s good for me and when I take the belt people will say, ‘He’s the youngest champion.’ That’s what they’ll say.”