Alexander Volkanovski vs. Islam Makhachev delivered on everyone’s expectations and more. The mega-fight between two of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world lasted all five rounds, with both combatants fighting out tooth and nail to get their hands raised.
The fight is already in the conversation for a potential ‘Fight of the Year’ honors, and it’s only February. Alexander Volkanovski once again demonstrated why he is a force to be reckoned with by shattering Makhachev’s perception of invincibility. He fought bravely for five rounds, even managing to hurt the Dagestani on several occasions.
Early on in the fight, Alexander Volkanovski’s switch of stance in the pocket perplexed Makhachev. The Dagestani was briefly stunned after being caught with a strong left hand from his opponent. As the fight progressed, Makhachev began to return fire with his left hand, which, to everyone’s surprise, turned out to be his most effective weapon throughout the entire fight.
Islam Makhachev managed to take down Volkanovski several times. However, just as he promised, the Australian proved to be a very difficult opponent to keep on the ground and Makhachev was forced into a standup battle with arguably one of the greatest strikers in the sport today.
The most decisive moment came in the fifth round when Alexander Volkanvski chewed down the mouthpiece and took the fight to Makhachev. He unleashed a powerful right hand in the closing minutes of the fight and continued to land vicious ground-and-pound strikes until the final bell. The fighters received a standing ovation from over 15,000 spectators at the RAC Arena in Perth, Australia.
In the end, the judges scored the bout unanimously in favor of Makhachev. Despite losing his status as the pound-for-pound best and falling short on his efforts to become a two-division champion, Alexander Volkanovski’s performance will go down in history as one of the most courageous efforts. The Australian spoke truth to power and delivered a powerful message that success is forged in adversity.
Catch Volkanovski’s post-fight interview below:
MMA pros react to Alexander Volkanovski putting on a solid fight against Islam Makhachev
Alexander Volkanovski’s efforts against Islam Makhachev did not go in vain. The entire MMA community took note, as fans, fighters, and commentators heaped praise upon the UFC featherweight champion.
Logan Paul was in attendance at the RAC Arena, and his reactions embodied the experience of every MMA fan over the course of the five rounds. He took to Twitter and wrote:
“WHAT A FIGHT #UFC284”
MMA star Nate Diaz, who’s had his fair share of history with the Dagestani camp, took the opportunity to pour scorn on Islam Makhachev:
“Yeah right Islam got his a*s whooped.”
Henry Cejudo hailed the fight as one of the “most competitive” he has ever witnessed:
“Respect @MAKHACHEVMMA @alexvolkanovski. That was one of the most competitive fights in the history of the sport 🔥🔥🔥 #UFC284”
Check out some of the best reactions below:
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