UFC featherweight champion Alex Volkanovski declared his ambitions to face Islam Makhachev, the lightweight champion, in a rematch.
Reigning 145-pound kingpin Alex Volkanovski was last seen in action in a ‘champ-champ’ showdown against 155-pound champion Makhachev at UFC 284 in the promotion’s grand return to Australia five months ago. He turned in a strong performance but narrowly missed out on securing ‘double-champ’ status as Makhachev edged him out in a close-fought decision win.
For his next outing, Volkanovski will face rising sensation and interim featherweight champion Yair Rodriguez in a title unification match and his return to featherweight.
Alex Volkanovski Wants Revenge Over Islam Makhachev: ‘More Important than the Belt’
During the pre-fight press conference for UFC 290, Alex Volkanovski shared his thoughts on his loss to Makhachev and his vision of going ahead.
“Obviously it stung after it but it plays on me you know, it just adds to the story. I’m going to get that rematch. Don’t worry, I’m going to do my business this weekend and I’ll get that rematch and it will add to the story,” said Volkanovski. “It was a close one. We think we did enough. Yeah, was it a robbery? No. It was a very close fight I know that but I showed you guys and I showed everyone that I definitely wasn’t going to get ragged like everyone thought, ended up on top and really put it on him but the next one but I’ll take that win and it’s just going to add to the story.”
Volkanovski says beating Makhachev is better than the title
For ‘The Great,’ beating Makhachev would mean more than winning the title in the case former UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira earns the gold back in an anticipated rematch with Makhachev.
“[Beating] Islam [is more important than the belt].”
Alex Volkanovski is set to take on Yair Rodriguez on July 8 in the headlining bout of International Fight Week’s UFC 290 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.