- Islam Makhachev is taking Alexander Volkanovski seriously despite already beating him during their first match
- The UFC lightweight champ revealed his plan to fight for the 170-pound strap and become a two-division champion
Islam Makhachev opened up about how tough Alexander Volkanovski is as an opponent and his desire to also fight for double champ status after this.
Focused on beating Volk
Speaking to TSN, Makhachev pointed out that he is not paying attention to anything else such as the short notice change of opponent. For the reigning lightweight champ, the main focus is to intensify his game as he is well aware that Volkanovski is tougher than Charles Oliveira.
“I don’t think about this much because you know this guy, dangerous, still dangerous because if you want stop Volkanovski, you have to knock him out or choke him, make him sleep,” Makhachev said. “This guy is going to fight five rounds, I told about Charles [Oliveira], if you pressure him, give him some hard time, he always give up but this guy is going to fight five rounds, nonstop and doesn’t matter who his opponent.”
Islam wants to be a two-division champ as well
Makhachev also did not shy away from emphasizing that if the UFC gave Volk two shots at becoming a double champ, they should also do the same thing with him, especially if he ends up beating “The Great” once again.
“Of course [I want to fight for the welterweight title]… what UFC say, I just sign you know. I never choose, never say nothing but I want the same change, give me the second belt, I want to try to be double champ because this is a history,” Makhachev opened up. “Not just champion, we have many champions but we don’t have many double champions. I want to be in the history, I want the second world win, the second belt and you know because I give chance twice to this guy they have to give me same too.”
A finish could end the story
It can be recalled that Makhachev managed to secure a unanimous decision win over Volkanovski during their first meeting at UFC 284. Despite the result, Makhachev knows many are still doubting his victory. With that in mind, Islam thinks finishing Volk could possibly put an end to all speculations.
“It’s going to be good for me because last fight like many people say like he looked good, like [in the] last round, after the fight, he looked good. But if I stop him, finish him, it change many things,” Makhachev concluded.
Makhachev was originally slated to face Oliveira but the Brazilian was forced to withdraw after suffering a massive cut on his eyebrow. UFC 294 will now be a rematch between Makhachev and Volkanovski, a super fight which many have been looking forward to witnessing once again.
Check out Islam’s full interview below: