Islam Makhachev Comments On Potential Rematch With Oliveira And Volkanovski, Wants Dustin Poirier Next

Islam will fight anybody but he also has his personal choice.

Islam Want New Opponent
Islam Want New Opponent - Image credit @islam_makhachev Instagram
  • Islam Makhachev shared his honest take on who would be his next possible opponent
  • The lightweight champ thinks Dustin Poirier is the biggest name among the potential title challengers

Reigning UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev doesn’t know what lies ahead of him but he is open to doing a rematch with either Charles Oliveira or Alexander Volkanovski. However, his top choice at the moment is Dustin Poirier.

Islam wanted Beneil but Charles or Volk is Okay

Speaking to YukaHero, Makhachev admitted that he was rooting for Beneil Dariush at UFC 289 because he was hoping to face a new challenge. With the winner between Poirier and Justin Gaethje also in line to become his potential challenger, the Dagestani champ could no longer predict which fight makes the most sense.

When it comes to a potential rematch with Oliveira and Volkanovski, Islam expressed his willingness to face both fighters to silence any claims of him avoiding competition.

“I was rooting for Dariush. I thought it would be a new challenge for me,” Makhachev said. “Dariush had eight wins in a row. I don’t know. I can’t say yet if my next fight will be a rematch against Charles. We have to wait. Now, Justin [Gaethje] and Dustin [Poirier] will fight, and then the UFC will decide.”

“Of course I want a new name on my resume. It’ll be better for me,” he continued. “If Oliveira will not fight me now, everyone will say that I’m avoiding him. I never choose my opponents. I will fight anyone the UFC gives me. I don’t think he can do anything. I’m not afraid of his grappling like the rest of the fighters. I can take him down at any time. Volkanovski is exactly the same. If they offer a rematch with Volkanovski, I will gladly accept it. I have said many times that I would be much better prepared if there were no issues surrounding the event, acclimatization and so on.”

The biggest name Deserves it the Most

For Makhachev, Dariush is already out of the picture and if he is to hand-pick his next foe, that would be Poirier. However, he knows that the decision is not only his to make.

“I don’t know. Maybe Poirier,” Makhachev said when asked who he personally wants next. “He has a big name in the UFC. Dariush lost, everything’s turned upside-down. I can’t say anything for now. If he had beat Oliveira, it would have been a good fight. Dariush’s skills were highly appreciated. It would have been a good fight.”

As it stands, Poirier and Gaethje could make a case for becoming next in line. Volkanovski, meanwhile, has been looking forward to facing Makhachev once again, possibly in Abu Dhabi. On the other hand, Makhachev’s team already sees Oliveira as the rightful next title challenger.

Published on June 19, 2023 at 12:34 pm
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