Just four months after claiming his first championship against Charles Oliveira at UFC 280, Islam Makhachev defeated Alexander Volkanovski by unanimous decision at UFC 284 in Perth.
Makhachev was the defending Lightweight champion and the #2 Pound-for-Pound fighter in the world against Alexander Volkanovski, the Featherweight champion, and the #1 Pound-for-Pound fighter.
The premise behind this matchup was to decide who would come out on top between the consensus two best fighters in the world and cement themselves as the greatest fighter alive.
The two fought and Islam proved to be better on the night. His Lightweight championship was on the line, and had he lost the fight, he would have lost the belt too.
The same could not be said for what Volkanovski laid on the line when the next Tuesday came around, and the UFC’s rankings were updated with Volkanovski still atop the Pound-for-Pound ladder.
In a recent interview, Makhachev gave his reaction to the news:
This refers to Magomed Ankalaev's contorversial draw against Jan Blachowicz that kept him for winning a UFC championship at UFC 282. He also references Petr Yan's controversial split decision loss to Sean O'Malley at UFC 280.
He furthered that the rankings did not matter to him, and that his main objective had already been accomplished.
Media personalities and MMA figures such as TheWeasle and Chael Sonnen have weighed in on the situation and claimed that it is unfair that fans were told the fight would be for the Lightweight belt and the Pound-for-pound status, yet, only Islam’s title was on the line. Sonnen pointed out that had the close decision between them gone the other way, Islam would have had no choice but to give up his belt, yet after losing a close fight, Volkanovski gets to keep his.
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