Octagon Oracles: CFFC Champion Saidyokub Kakhramonov

Saidyokub Kakhramonov motions a phonecall movement with his hands while in an MMA cage. CFFC Champion Saidyokub Kakhramonov will make his UFC debut this weekend. Photo Credit: CFFC / UFC Fight Pass

It wasn’t a wild take recently in MMA prospect circles to predict that Saidyokub Kakhramonov would land in the UFC soon. His recent performances and overall résumé made a good case for the bantamweight. However, few saw this weekend as the time that he would finally get the call.

In the end, this weekend will finally be Kakhramonov’s time. The CFFC Bantamweight Champion got the short-notice call earlier this week, and decided to take a bout against the red-hot Trevin Jones.

The Octagon Oracles team has their opinions about how Kakhramonov will do on the big stage. Here’s what we think.

James Colwell

Grade: B
Sometimes when you’re watching a regional event, you get so accustomed to the lower level of talent on display that seeing a next-level fighter appear suddenly can be a shock, which is exactly what happened with Kakhramonov’s CFFC bantamweight title win back in March. He faced off against respected regional veteran Tycen Lynn for the vacant belt and was clearly on another level athletically and with his striking. He won the first round and got an early knockdown in the second, then smartly decided to let his opponent back to his feet, where he finished him with a few more huge shots. That level of power in a bantamweight is dangerous, and Kakhramonov has proven in the past that he stays dangerous even as the fight progresses into the later rounds. He’s also got good movement/defense and strong wrestling, and while I haven’t seen as much of his jiu-jitsu against quality opponents, he does have three submissions on his pro resume. In terms of past opponents’ one of his losses came in a decision against the outstanding Umar Nurmagomedov during the 2018 PFL season, and he also has a 40-second knockout of former UFC signee and quality prospect Askar Askar in 2020.

Overall, while he’s skilled in a lot of areas and has some deadly power in his hands, I don’t think Kakhramonov is elite in enough aspects of MMA to be much of a threat to the UFC rankings, especially as he’s matched against another knockout artist for his debut in Trevin Jones, who’s at least equally explosive with his striking. But as long as he gets some decent matchmaking, I can easily see him sticking around as a long-term member of the bantamweight division who will provide a tough test to everyone he faces.

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Kristen King

Grade: A-
Saidyokub Kakhramonov is such a good signing for the UFC. I was certain he was going to join the promotion at some point following an appearance on a program such as “Dana White’s Contender Series” or “The Ultimate Fighter,” but I am glad that he gets to bypass that and go straight to the grand stage. He does have a very tough assignment in meeting Trevin Jones on short-notice at “UFC Fight Night: Cannonier vs. Gastelum” on Saturday, though.

Kakhramonov does a lot of things well. He is a strong wrestler and does some of his best work in the clinch and on the ground. He is in full control up against the cage or down on the canvas and he always seems one step ahead of his opponent in those positions. He is also a solid striker and can connect with a stinging right hand or slick 1-2 combination, but I think the true highlight of his arsenal is his kicking. He throws a mean kick to the body with so much force and then he will dazzle you with a spinning wheel kick. Sure, they do not always land and can sometimes knock him off balance, but being in close enough proximity to eat one of Kakhramonov’s kicks is not something I would recommend to anyone sharing a cage with him.

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Jack Wannan

Grade: A
To an extent, it feels like Kakhramonov’s record doesn’t do him justice. With eight wins and two losses, on paper he seems like your run-of-the-mill high-level prospect fighter – but that’s simply not the case. When looking into who he has faced and the results he has put up, it’s clear that “fighter with eight wins and two losses” is not an apt description of him.

One of his two losses came in 2018 came against Umar Nurmagomedov, a fighter who is now also in the UFC and is still undefeated through 13 fights. The combined record of Kakhramonov’s opponents is 42 wins and 11 losses. That’s a legit record, and his wins have come against solid fighters who were at a same or better level than him.

Kakhramonov is coming into the promotion with nearly the full package. He has powerful striking and strong wrestling. His title win in CFFC against Tycen Lynn showed this. After a strong opening round of wrestling, Kakhramonov took Lynn out early in the second with punches. The finish displayed his patience, as he came forward with punches against a hurt Lynn but did not rush for a finish.

The challenges will only get bigger for Kakhramonov as he enters the UFC. Can he maintain success at a high level? I think so. I’m high on CFFC’s latest graduate.

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