Alexander Volkanovski Responds To Ilia Topuria’s First-Round Knockout Prediction: ‘This Stuff Excites Me’

Alexander Volkanovski doesn't want Ilia Topuria to fight Max Holloway so he can do the job himself.

Alexander Volkanovski
Alexander Volkanovski (Left) and Ilia Topuria (Right)(Images via Instagram @AlexVolkanovski and @IliaTopuria)

Alexander Volkanovski responded to Ilia Topuria’s prediction of a first-round knockout in their potential future title fight. 

On July 8, Volkanovski continued his reign of terror as the UFC featherweight champion by defeating Yair Rodriguez with a third-round TKO. If ‘The Great’ doesn’t attempt to become a two-division champion at lightweight again, he will likely be matched up against Ilia Topuria, who defeated Josh Emmett on June 24

During the latest episode of The MMA Hour, Topuria predicted he would knock out Volkanovski in the first round. Later in the show, the UFC featherweight king responded to his confidence by saying: 

“You gotta be confident. There’s confidence and then there’s delusional. Again, I don’t mind the bloke. Even with things that he says, what he’s saying doesn’t really make sense… Do you watch me fight? I don’t know what he’s talking about.”

Volkanovski continued: 

“I hope he believes that [he would knock me out in the first round]. I’m sure he’s confident. I’m sure he believes he can beat me…  This stuff excites me as well. I wanna be active, I want guys. I don’t wanna sit there and say like, if I can’t do the lightweight thing, I wanna fight as soon as I can.”

Since making his UFC debut in November 2016, Volkanovski has established a 12-0 record in the featherweight division. Meanwhile, Topuria holds a promotional record of 6-0, including four wins inside the distance. ‘El Matador’ has proven to be a legitimate title contender, but the reigning 145-pound has looked nearly unbeatable in his division. 

Alexander Volkanovski doesn’t want Ilia Topuria to fight Max Holloway before their potential title fight

Ilia Topuria is the number five-ranked UFC featherweight. The 26-year-old has drawn the attention of Alexander Volkanovski, but it’s unclear if his next fight will be for the 145-pound title. With that said, Volkanovski is advocating to fight Topuria next so he doesn’t lose his hype against another top contender, especially Max Holloway. 

During the same episode of The MMA Hour, Volkanovski pleaded with Topuria not to fight Holloway by saying: 

“I’m talking to Ilia [Topuria] if he’s watching. Please don’t fight Max [Holloway], just don’t fight Max. Let’s just not let that happen. Let me be the guy to beat you up.”

Volkanovski has won three title fights against Holloway. Besides his losses against ‘The Great,’ Holloway has been unbeatable in the featherweight division, leading to fifteen consecutive wins at 145 pounds. ‘Rush’ last fought on April 15, defeating another top contender, Arnold Allen, by unanimous decision.

Published on July 11, 2023 at 3:02 am
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