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Teammate says Conor McGregor will KO Khabib Nurmagomedov in first round

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James Gallagher is making a bold prediction on behalf of Conor McGregor ahead of UFC 229.

Former two-division UFC champion McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) will return from a more than two-year hiatus in October, when he challenges Khabib Nurmagomedov (26-0 MMA, 10-0 UFC) in attempt to regain the title he never lost but rather was stripped of due to his hiatus from the octagon.

“The Notorious” returning to action against Nurmagomedov – who has never lost a round in UFC competition – is no easy task. However, Gallagher (7-0 MMA, 4-0 BMMA), a Bellator bantamweight who is one of McGregor’s teammates at SBG Ireland in Dublin, has visions of a quick victory for his training partner.

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“He’s going to get stiffened in about a minute-and-a-half,” Gallagher told MMAjunkie.

UFC 229 takes place Oct. 6 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims which are expected to air on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass, though broadcast plans haven’t been finalized.

Although his opinion is undeniably bias, Gallagher, 21, said McGregor, 30, is a legitimately bad matchup for Nurmagomedov, 29. The fight is a classic striker vs. grappler showdown, but at the absolute highest level of the sport.

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Gallagher said he believes Nurmagomedov will make a misstep when trying to take the fight to the ground, and that’s when McGregor will capitalize.

“He’s going to rush in and try to get ahold of Conor,” Gallagher said. “You can’t fire sloppy shots to try to close the distance. He’ll take one clean shot on the chin, and he’ll hit the floor.”

Gallagher competes in his own fight on Friday at Bellator 204. He meets Ricky Bandejas (10-1 MMA, 0-0 BMMA) in a Paramount-televised bantamweight bout at Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, S.D., following prelims streamed on MMAjunkie.

For more on UFC 229, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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