‘I’ll Be Faster And Stronger’ – Halil Amir Expects Big Things In Featherweight Debut Against Akbar Abdullaev

Halil Amir Maurice Abevi ONE Fight Night 9 45

After earning a spot in the lightweight MMA top five, Halil “No Mercy” Amir is ready to shake up the featherweight MMA division when he returns in U.S. primetime on Friday, May 3. 

The Turkish sensation will drop down to face Akbar “Bakal” Abdullaev in a clash of unbeaten striking specialists at ONE Fight Night 22: Sundell vs. Diachkova on Prime Video, and he feels better than ever ahead of their crucial clash at Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand.

Amir has knocked out eight of his opponents en route to a perfect 10-0 slate – with two of his three wins in ONE’s lightweight division adding to that tally – and he thinks the move will make his arsenal even more potent.  

This could be key against Abdullaev, who is also 10-0 with 90 percent of his victories coming via KO. 

“No Mercy” spoke to onefc.com about the matchup:

“I’m not a big lightweight, and I think in this weight class, I’ll be faster and stronger. 

“My opponent, Akbar, is a good fighter. He has explosive kicks, and he’s a classic kickboxer. His strong point is obvious – his striking technique.” 

Given that 19 of their 20 combined wins have come inside the distance, the statistics indicate that a finish is the most likely outcome in this hard-hitting showdown. 

But Amir doesn’t intend to change his game to accommodate Abdullaev’s threat. Instead, he’ll stick with what he knows and constantly look for a way to dispatch the Kyrgyz standout:

“I don’t have a special plan for him. I will enter the ring and move forward, as always. 

“My goal is to finish him. If I cannot succeed, I’ll do everything in my power to make the referee raise my hand. 

“After my victory, I want to fight for the belt or with someone from the top five rankings.” 

Halil Amir Opens Up On Training Sessions With MMA Legend Khabib Nurmagomedov 

Halil Amir has done everything in his power to ensure he gets off to a winning start in the featherweight MMA ranks, and that includes training with an all-time great.

“No Mercy” traveled to Dagestan to prepare under the tutelage of legendary competitor Khabib Nurmagomedov, and he benefitted from that time with the retired MMA World Champion.  

Primarily a striker, Amir was eager to improve other areas of his skill set while learning from one of the sport’s most dominant grapplers. 

The 29-year-old said: 

“Khabib did several training sessions. For me, it was a very good experience. He has hard training at his school. 

“Khabib always has strict discipline during training. Naturally, the work was focused on wrestling and grappling.  

“As a person, he is a very simple person. He is often immersed in training and helps his team and, of course, he was also pushing me during the training sessions.” 

More in News

Johan Ghazali Edgar Tabares ONE Fight Night 17 10
Suablack Tor Pran49 Kiamrian Nabati
Denice Zamboanga
Adrian Lee and Christian Lee
Marat Grigorian Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong ONE 165 1
Kade Ruotolo Francisco Lo ONE Fight Night 21 57
Stamp Fairtex Ham Seo Hee ONE Fight Night 14 112
Tawanchai PK Saenchai Jo Nattawut ONE Fight Night 15 19
Parham Gheirati Otop Or Kwanmuang ONE Friday Fights 57 7
Gabriel Sousa
Mikey Musumeci Jarred Brooks ONE Fight Night 13 72
Yodphupa Wimanair Soner Sen ONE Friday Fights 63 48