Following the recent event, Islam Makhachev’s coach is convinced that a rematch with Alexander Volkanovski is inevitable. Volkanovski showcased his dominance at UFC 290 by defeating Yair Rodriguez and successfully defending his featherweight title. This fight marked Volkanovski’s return since his loss to Makhachev at UFC 284 in a lightweight bout. Not only did it reaffirm Volkanovski as the top pound-for-pound fighter, but it also ignited Mendez’s enthusiasm for the potential rematch.
During his podcast, Mendez expressed his admiration for Volkanovski’s performance, stating, “It was a fight that demonstrated Alex’s greatness through his actions. He made adjustments, deviating from his usual style. Although he was being out-struck in the stand-up, he changed the game plan by utilizing his wrestling skills, and he proved himself in that aspect. He took Yair down and completely dominated him on the ground. And then, when he landed that right hook and capitalized on it… it was a beautiful display of intelligence and high fight IQ. Let’s wait and see what happens. Perhaps they’ll match him up with Islam, or maybe they’ll choose someone else for Islam. However, I’m certain that somewhere down the line, we will have to face him again, and I eagerly anticipate it because it will be an incredible fight, especially after that remarkable performance.”
While no official announcement has been made, current indications suggest that Makhachev will defend his lightweight title at UFC 294 in Abu Dhabi. Nevertheless, the opponent for that fight remains uncertain. Former lightweight champion Charles Oliveira seemed to be the most probable contender, but he recently expressed his unavailability to compete in October. Mendez believes that the champion is unlikely to accommodate any requests to delay the fight until later in the year.
Mendez stated, “Oliveira has been talking about fighting in November or December, but he doesn’t get to decide when he fights for the title. The UFC makes that decision. As far as I know, they have Islam scheduled for October 21 because they need him in Abu Dhabi. I strongly believe that fight makes perfect sense for Islam to stay on that card. Regarding the opponent, I don’t have any information. It could still be Oliveira; he might say, ‘Never mind, I’ll fight him in Abu Dhabi.’ I don’t know.”
Considering these circumstances, Volkanovski might find himself in another lightweight title shot sooner than expected, especially since he expressed his willingness to make a quick return for a rematch with Makhachev, despite needing minor surgery. Whether the rematch occurs in October or further down the line, Mendez firmly believes that it is destined to happen. He also emphasizes that the rematch will be as captivating as their initial encounter.
“When that fight takes place, both parties will have their work cut out for them. It won’t be a walk in the park for either of them. You have two fighters who can adapt in various ways. Islam is not incapable of standing with Volk; he certainly can. Similarly, Volk is not defenseless on the ground; he has proven himself in that realm. We both possess the ability to adjust. Let’s see how it unfolds. It’s inevitable that this fight will happen at some point, and I expect it to be nothing short of epic. It will be one of those second fights between champions that delivers once again. It will undoubtedly deliver.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about rematch
Is a rematch between Alexander Volkanovski and Islam Makhachev likely?
Yes, according to Javier Mendez, Islam Makhachev’s coach, a rematch with Alexander Volkanovski is considered inevitable, especially after Volkanovski’s impressive performance at UFC 290.
How did Alexander Volkanovski perform at UFC 290?
Alexander Volkanovski delivered another stellar performance at UFC 290, dominating Yair Rodriguez and successfully defending his featherweight title. It was his first fight since losing to Islam Makhachev at UFC 284.
What did Javier Mendez say about Alexander Volkanovski’s performance?
Javier Mendez praised Volkanovski’s display of greatness and versatility during the fight. He commended Volkanovski for adjusting his strategy and showcasing his wrestling skills to dominate his opponent on the ground.
Who might be Islam Makhachev’s next opponent?
While nothing is official yet, there are speculations that Islam Makhachev might defend his lightweight title at UFC 294 in Abu Dhabi. The specific opponent is still unknown, but former champion Charles Oliveira was previously considered a likely contender.
When can we expect the rematch between Volkanovski and Makhachev?
The exact timing of the rematch is uncertain. It could potentially happen in October or at a later date. Javier Mendez believes that a rematch between the two fighters is destined to take place and expects it to be an epic fight whenever it occurs.