Springfield, MA – It’s three days till struggle night time, however Nathan Ghareeb has been prepared for weeks.
The Southampton, MA, native returns to the cage Friday night time in the principle occasion of CES 70 on the MassMutual Middle stay on UFC FIGHT PASS®, the place he faces former coaching companion and Waterbury, CT, native Dan Dubuque for the vacant CES MMA World Featherweight Championship.
A lot has been made concerning the rivalry between the 2; they skilled collectively again in 2018 on the Combating Arts Academy (FAA) in Connecticut and even sparred each other main as much as Ghareeb’s final struggle in June. When introduced with the chance to face each other in an precise struggle that counts, neither facet balked, and so as to add much more gasoline to the hearth, there was no scarcity from each camps on who’s going to win and the way, making this a struggle MMA followers can’t afford to overlook.
Tickets for CES 70 can be found on-line at CESFights.com or MassMutualCenter.com. Preliminary bouts start at 7 pm ET adopted by the FIGHT PASS stay stream at 8 with play-by-play announcer Michael Parente (@MichaelParente); coloration commentator Joe Lauzon (@JoeLauzon), a 27-time UFC vet; and FUN 107 on-air character and cageside correspondent Madelyn Levine (@maddieonair).
Each Ghareeb (6-1) and Dubuque (8-5) have been loads vocal within the weeks main as much as the struggle. They’ve been pegged as rivals, pals turned foes, blood-thirsty enemies on a collision course with future, however the reality is there’s a mutual respect shared between the 2, even when it hasn’t all the time been conveyed adequately by means of the press.
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Dubuque, a former world-title challenger in 2019 when he confronted Bruce Boyington for CES’ featherweight crown, lately spoke about his motivation for accepting this struggle regardless of not having fought in additional than two years. The 36-year-old righty, who owns his own residence and enterprise inspection firm, Connecticut Inspection Consultants, LLC, boasts a deceiving 8-5 document as a result of, in his personal phrases, “I solely take robust fights.”
Likewise, Dubuque added, “I’ve a profession. I do that for enjoyable. If this doesn’t work out, it’s not the tip of the world for me.”
Ghareeb, who notes that, not like Dubuque, “I commit my life to this,” has in contrast the buildup to this struggle to a “toned-down” model of the Colby Covington-Jorge Masvidal UFC 272 hype, but additionally appeared irked that Dubuque took exception to this preliminary opinion of the struggle the place he mentioned, “I don’t simply wish to beat him – I wish to end him.”
Defined Ghareeb: “I actually consider I’m a greater fighter. He’s extra of a gatekeeper – a troublesome man who depends on his grit and toughness. That’s nice, however that’s the technology earlier than me. They destroyed their our bodies. I’ve been good with my profession. I respect the man for what he’s accomplished, however, like I mentioned earlier than, it is a completely different sport and I’m a distinct technology of fighter.
“Should you signal a contract to struggle me, perceive one factor: I’m going to come back on the market to harm you. That is all the things I work for. He does this for enjoyable. I sacrifice all the things to do that. After they advised me he needed this struggle, I mentioned, ‘Fantastic. I’ll provide you with what you’re asking for.’” This is a chance for me to make an instance of any individual. Even for those who’re a pal of mine, for those who assume you’re going to step up and beat me you’re flawed.”
If it seems and seems like Ghareeb has a chip on his shoulder, it’s as a result of he does. A self-described “nomad,” Ghareeb has by no means worn out his welcome at one fitness center for very lengthy. He’s taken benefit of studying completely different disciplines and methods by means of completely different trainers, whether or not it’s been at FAA or in West Virginia, Germany, Austria, and even Thailand. He by no means had the luxurious of working his whole life out of 1 prestigious academy or working below the steerage of 1 well-known coach or supervisor, and for that cause, he says, he’s been neglected.
“How many individuals knew who I used to be till August? I used to be some goofball who confirmed up and fought,” Ghareeb mentioned. “They’ve all the time talked concerning the guys from japanese Massachusetts who come from notable gyms. I used to be just a few man. Now I’ve had the possibility to go up in opposition to a few of these guys and show my value. The fact is I’m not attempting to be the most effective in New England. I’m attempting to be among the best fighters on the planet.”
Whereas Ghareeb has felt neglected all through his whole profession based mostly on his background, Dubuque feels he’s now the underdog this weekend based mostly on a few of the predictions which have come down the pipeline in current weeks. Whoever wins will immediately discover themselves within the dialog for an even bigger alternative, maybe earlier than the tip of 2022. All “pleasantries” apart, this one has the makings of an instantaneous basic.
“I respect Nate. I simply assume I’m extra of a canine than him. Flat out,” Dubuque mentioned. “If he lets the struggle go on, I’m going to be there all 25 minutes. I believe he’s vastly underestimating me and overlooking me. I believe he’s going to search out out the onerous approach.”
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Founder, Govt Author, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a ardour for Fight Sports activities and in addition a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s additionally a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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