Alexander Volkanovski Expects A Striking War With Islam Makhachev And Is Happy To Be The Underdog

Featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski is expecting a striking bout with lightweight champion Islam Makhachev.

Volkanovski
Credit Alexander Volkanovski and Islam Makhachev on Instagram

Alexander Volkanovski hopes people are counting him out at UFC 284.

Alexander Volkanovski knows that just because he is smaller than his next opponent doesn’t mean that he can’t win. Since coming to the UFC it seems that all Volkanovski does is win. He has been undefeated in his last 22 fights and is ranked as the number one pound-for-pound fighter in the UFC. He has seemed unbeatable in the UFC featherweight division but is now risking his winning streak to move up in weight and challenge for the lightweight strap.

Islam Makhachev is the newly crowned champion at 155 pounds. He defeated Charles Oliveira at UFC 280 to win the belt. He is a student of former champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and is heavily influenced by him and the Sambo style of wrestling. Volkanovski is not afraid to go to the ground with Makhachev when they meet at UFc 284 in Perth, Australia but sees the bout taking place mainly on the feet. 

“I think, obviously strategy and all that goes a long way and I’m very hard to hold down so I’m expecting a stand-up battle,” he said in an interview with Laura Sanko of the UFC. “Let’s see how good his striking is, he’s supposed to be well rounded so we’ll see.”

Alexander Volkanovski is not afraid of being the underdog in the fight, in fact, he enjoys it

Volkanovski will be undersized for his bout with Makhachev, although he plans on bulking up quite a bit for the fight. The fight will be taking place in Perth, Australia where Volkanovski is from. He plans on going out there and dominating his opponent. He wants to add “champ champ” to his resume and is even welcoming all the doubts from the haters. 

“I was always the one that they, all these big fellas had to keep an eye on because I was the one that was running straight through and dumping them on their head,” he said. “So we’ll see what happens fight night. I’m hoping people doubt me because I love being the underdog. I’m sure I’m gonna be the underdog, well, again, I hope. I can’t wait to go out there and prove people wrong because that just really fires me up.”

UFC 284 will take place in RAC Arena in Perth, Australia on February 12. This lightweight title bout will be the headliner. So far the rest of that card is as follows:

  • Middleweight Robert Whittaker vs. Paulo Costa
  • Heavyweight Justin Tafa vs. Parker Porter
  • Light Heavyweight Tyson Pedro vs. Zhang Mingyang
  • Featherweight Joshua Culibao vs. Melsik Baghdasaryan
  • Featherweight Jack Jenkins vs. Don Shainis
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