- Alexander Volkanovski thinks Yair Rodriguez will be an exciting challenge
- “The Great” said a fourth fight Max Holloway and rematch with Islam Makhachev is still on
Reigning featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski is still looking forward to a rematch with Islam Makhachev. But on the other hand, “The Great” is excited to face the next in line in his division.
Yair is dangerous
Speaking to The Mac Life, Volk said he is taking interim featherweight champion Yair Rodriguez seriously because he has all the tools of a dangerous fighter. The champ acknowledged the fact that Rodriguez was known for his “flashy” stunts but now he has improved a lot across the board.
“I’m looking at him as a rude challenger like he’s a dangerous fighter. He could be one of the most dangerous fighters I’ve fought really. When you talk about unpredictability and power knockout, and so many different tools so you need to take him really serious. I think I’m the best fighter in the world so am I confident? yeah but he’s been dominating and looking good in his last few fights… Very unpredictable so it’s exciting for me you know what I mean? new challenges,” Volkanovski said of Rodriguez.
“He was very good with his flashy stuff but… now he looks like he’s a lot more comfortable at all ranges. He looks very unpredictable, when you’re pressuring him at a long range, no matter where it is you know he can fire all different things from all different angles that’s always a big threat, so it’s good that’s when the master game planning and the fight IQ and all that type of stuff needs to come in and looking forward to it because again that excites me,” he continued.
Islam rematch will happen in time
Volkanovski made it clear that he wants to run it back with Makhachev right after he lost in their historic match at UFC 284. However, the UFC couldn’t guarantee when will it happen and Volk said he doesn’t like waiting.
“To be honest, it wasn’t really like that like to be honest we even had a more of an option. They even asked like you know what do we want to do but I mean I wanted to fight as soon as possible so that was what it was and I was in line when I said I wanted to stay busy you know what I mean so it was that was the honest truth and that was the case they even asked, they’re like, ‘Look if you want the rematch we don’t know, that’s not going to be till the end of the year.’ I ain’t waiting until the end of the year I can get a fight at featherweight and then see you, see what happens later,” Volkanovski revealed.
Max will have his turn
Prior to his UFC Kansas City win over Arnold Allen, Max Holloway flirted with the idea of a fourth match with Volkanovski. For “The Great,” he likes the fact that his challengers are lining up but he will deal with them accordingly.
“The more contenders you have to have, the better… if this fight does happen with Yair, you know I need to get over that first but I mean you got you’ve got some things lined up that’s what I wanted right? I want to be busy and uh we prove that so having that would have been great,” Volk said of a fourth fight with Holloway.
Volkanovski vs. Rodriguez will take place at UFC 290 on July 8. The champ will try to defend his featherweight belt for the fourth time, while Rodriguez will be out to prove that he is the rightful king of the 145-pound division.
Rodriguez will be coming in off a sensational submission win over Josh Emmett at UFC 284 to become the interim featherweight champion. On the other hand, Volk will be making his return to featherweight after a devastating decision loss to Makhachev.