A super-fight between Islam Makhachev and Alexander Volkanovski could be bound for Australia. Immediately after defeating Charles Oliveira to claim the UFC lightweight championship at UFC 280, Makhachev issued a challenge to the UFC featherweight champion.
Often times the defending champion is the one fielding callouts, but not this time. Makhachev and his coach, UFC Hall of Famer Khabib Nurmagoemdov, challenged Volkanovski to a lightweight title fight in Australia in the aftermath of UFC 280's main event. Volkanovski is currently the No. 1 ranked pound-for-pound UFC fighter and served as the alternate for Oliveira vs. Makhachev. Volkanovski was invited into the Octagon and accepted Makhachev's challenge.
Who's next? @MakhachevMMA wants @AlexVolkanovski in Perth 👀 #UFC280 pic.twitter.com/xE3YMd7Fmr— UFC (@ufc) October 22, 2022
Nurmagomedov argued that Makhachev is the top pound-for-pound fighter in the sport and should usurp Oliveira's No. 2 spot after defeating him. Volkanovski has repeatedly expressed his desire to challenge for the lightweight crown as he awaits a clear contender in the featherweight division.
Makhachev overwhelmed Oliveira at UFC 280. His ability to take down Oliveira and avoid submission threats in Round 1 set him up for a fight-ending finish in Round 2. Makhachev dropped Oliveira and immediately snatched an arm-triangle choke that forced Oliveira to tap.
"I didn't expect a second-round finish. He even dropped Charles which was pretty good," Volkanovski told UFC's social media team. "His hands were looking alright, but put it this way: I've still seen that he had problems even holding Charles down. Trust me, I am not easy to hold down. I'm going to get back to the feet. It's going to be a stand-up war and let's see what happens."
Volk is ready for the smoke 😤— UFC (@ufc) October 22, 2022
[ @AlexVolkanovski | #UFC280 ] pic.twitter.com/ZQB1HOlcsr
Makhachev (23-1) now has 11 consecutive victories. Volkanovski (25-1) is undefeated inside the UFC cage and boasts a 22-fight winning streak dating back to 2013.
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