It didn’t take long after Alexander Volkanovski’s loss to Islam Makhachev for the UFC’s featherweight champion to watch the fight and score things himself.
The 34-year-old’s bid to become a two-division UFC champion was set up basically from the moment that Makhachev submitted Charles Oliveira at UFC 280 to claim the promotion’s lightweight title. The two fighters exchanged words in the cage following Makhachev’s win, and the UFC worked quickly to book the pair as the main event for UFC 284.
The event marked the UFC’s return to Australia for the first time since 2019, and the promotion made sure to stack the card with as much local talent as possible. There were a few planned matchups that fell through leading up to the event, but the headliner between Australia’s Volkanovski and Makhachev remained intact and was always the main selling point for the card.
The matchup between the promotion’s number one and number two pound-for-pound fighters ended up delivering an early candidate for Fight of the Year, and Makhachev successfully defended his title with a competitive unanimous decision.
Alexander Volkanovski suggests rematch after scoring fight
Volkanovski gave a fantastic account of himself against Makhachev and provided the 31-year-old’s toughest test to date, but apparently after watching the fight himself, “The Great” feels he should have walked away with a second belt.
“Just watched the fight, I definitely think I won 2, 3, and 5. Surprised I didn’t get my hand raised! Let’s do the rematch, anywhere, anytime!”
Few fans would likely complain about seeing Volkanovski and Makhachev face off in the cage again, but “The Great” already has his next challenger lined up in the featherweight division.
Yair Rodriguez earned the biggest win of his career when submitted Josh Emmett in the second round of the UFC 284 co-main event to claim the UFC’s interim featherweight championship. A fight with “El Pantera” would present a fresh challenge for Volkanovski, who has already defended his featherweight title on four occasions.