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UFC’s Cory Sandhagen wants five-round fight with Umar Nurmagomedov

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Cory Sandhagen hopes his fight with Umar Nurmagomedov is five rounds.

Sandhagen (17-4 MMA, 10-3 UFC) accepted Nurmagomedov’s (17-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) callout for their fight to be rebooked. Nurmagomedov is coming off a unanimous decision win over newcomer Bekzat Almakhan at UFC Fight Night 238.

Sandhagen thinks the high pace Nurmagomedov pushed against Almakhan slowed him down, something he plans on exposing in a 25-minute fight. Sandhagen’s past five fights have been scheduled for five rounds, four of which went the distance.

“That’s what I asked for,” Sandhagen said in an interview with Fanatics View. “I feel like I’m a five-round fighter. I do better in five-round fights. The pace that I feel I could be able to push in a three rounder, especially after doing five rounds for the last two or three years of my life, would be maybe enjoyable. I think it would be cool to push the pace that high. If this is a three rounder, I feel like camp is going to be a lot easier.

“It’s not really going to be, but maybe the level of physical getting beat up is going to be less because I don’t need to do seven, eight rounds when I’m sparring if I’m doing a three-round fight. That would kind of mess up the pace in which I would fight at anyways. Yeah, he definitely was breathing hard. He definitely showed a vulnerability, and that’s definitely not something you want to do.”

The UFC already has two events scheduled in the Middle East – June 22 in Riyadh, Saudia Arabia, and Aug. 3 in Abu Dhabi. However, Sandhagen would rather their fight did not take place in the Middle East.

“I don’t know that I should have to go to the other side of the world to fight,” Sandhagen said. “I’m giving him a shot. That’s what it feels like. I am the guy giving him the platform to show that he deserves to fight for the belt next, and, no, I don’t really love the idea of going halfway across the world so that he can have an advantage.”

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