Islam Makhachev’s Coach Reacts To Alex Volkanovski’s Showing, Says Charles Oliveira Could Still Be Next Foe

Mendez lays out who could be next for Makhachev.

Mendez On Volk
(via @islam_makhachev, @charlesdobronxs - Instagram)

Alexander Volkanovski showed just how ‘great he is’ last weekend.

The UFC Featherweight Champion was victorious at UFC 290, where he TKO’ed interim champ Yair Rodriguez to unify the title. Following the fight, there a few options out there for Volkanovski. One being a title defense against top contender Ilia Topuria and the other being, you guessed it, a super-fight with Makhachev.

At UFC 284, Volkanovski and Makhachev fought over the distance to a disputed split decision which was scored for Makhahchev.

Mendez On Volkanovski’s Performance

Makhachev’s head coach Javier Mendez had this to say about Volkanovski’s latest outing:

“It was one of those fights where Alex proved how great he is by what he did,” Mendez said on his podcast. “He adjusted, he did something he normally doesn’t do. He was again outstruck on the range fighting. So, he changed the script to being the wrestler and he could wrestle and he proved he could wrestle, also.

“So, he took Yair down and he thoroughly dominated him on the ground. It wasn’t until he hit him with the right hand and then he pounced on him— he went boom, boom, dumped them. That was a beautiful display of a guy that’s super smart, great IQ.”

‘We’re Gonna Have To Fight Him Again’

For Mendez, it’s not a matter of if Volkanovski fights Makhachev again, it’s a matter of when. 

“Let’s see what happens. Let’s see if they give him to Islam or they give someone else to Islam. But, somewhere down the line, we’re gonna have to fight him again. I look forward to it because it’ll be a great fight, definitely after that performance.”

Where Does Charles Oliveira Fit Into This?


Makhachev’s coach also says Charles Oliveira is in the running for a rematch, potentially at UFC 294. While Oliveira is opting out of an October turnaround, Mendez says it’s not up to ‘Do Bronx’ to decide.

“Oliveira is talking about how he wants to fight in November or December. Well, he’s not gonna get to decide when he fights for the title. The UFC decides that,” Mendez continued. “I believe that Islam’s scheduled on October 21st because they need him for Abu Dhabi. I believe that’s 100% the fight that makes sense for Islam to stay there.

“Who the opponent is? I don’t know. And it could be Oliveira still. Oliveira could say, ‘Nevermind, I’ll fight him in Abu Dhabi’. I don’t know.”

Published on July 10, 2023 at 2:08 pm
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