Islam Makhachev wants to pursue two division championships to make history.
UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev is fresh off of his first title defense. He defeated featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski in the main event of UFC 284 by unanimous decision. Following the bout, many thought that Volkanovski had won the fight and began to send their cries for a rematch. To add fuel to the fire, a member of Volkanovski’s team made allegations following the event that Makhachev had illegally used an IV to recover.
No wrongdoing was founded but now a rematch between these two champions seems even more interesting. Both men seem to want the fight but there are outstanding circumstances that must be settled, for one, Volkanovski is due to defend his 145-pound title next against Yair Rodriguez. However, if the UFC gives the okay then Makhachev is all in on a rematch. He spoke about this in a recent interview via Team Dagestan on YouTube.
“We agreed with Volkanovski after the fight, he asked if we could make a rematch I answered of course,” he said per translation.”If UFC wants it then no problem because it’s all decided by the UFC, as they want, so be it. Fighters cannot assign fights to each other without the consent of the management.”
Islam Makhachev is targeting two division titles in the future
Makhachev put his lightweight title on the line at UFC 284 against Volkanovski, however, it was only the featherweight champ that could have become a duel-champion. Makhachev was never eligible to win the featherweight belt at that time. He does, however, want to hold two belts at one time and if that was an option right now he would take it.
“100% I would be interested. Even now if the UFC wants to do this and offer me the next fight in a different weight category I will discuss with the team of course but I 100% agree,” he said. “I want to try myself in a different weight category because the double champion will remain in history for a long time.”
Let’s run it back and give the people what they want! @MAKHACHEVMMA https://t.co/clkz93ldaM
— Alex Volkanovski (@alexvolkanovski) February 22, 2023
Makhachev is a large fighter for the lightweight division. If he were to compete in another weight class it would most likely be at welterweight, so the possibility of the rematch with Volkanovski being at 145 pounds does not seem possible. Many believe that there is still more work to do at 155 pounds for Makhachev at this time before he can start jumping around.