Islam Makhachev stuns Alexander Volkanovski with head-kick KO in first round at UFC 294

Referee Marc Goddard stepped in, confirming an emphatic victory and title defence for Makhachev, the mentee and childhood friend of UFC lightweight great Khabib Nurmagomedov.

The result extended Makhachev’s win streak to 13 fights, dating back to 2015, when he suffered the sole loss of his professional career. Meanwhile, Volkanovski was beaten for the third time as a pro, though he remains undefeated at his preferred weight of 145lbs.

Makhachev seals the finish against Volkanovski

Volkanovski was left bloodied by the fight-ending sequence

“Alexander The Great” rebounded from his first loss to Makhachev by stopping Yair Rodriguez in July, retaining the featherweight title against the then-interim champion. He will look to respond to his latest defeat when he takes on his next title challenger – likely Ilia Topuria in January.

Meanwhile, Makhachev could be set for a rematch with Oliveira, whom he was originally due to face at UFC 294 and whom he submitted in October 2022 to win the lightweight belt. The 155lbs title was vacant at the time of that bout, which took place in Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Arena like UFC 294, after Oliveira was stripped of the belt for missing weight in May 2022.

Meanwhile, Volkanovski’s featherweight title reign dates back to 2019, when he took the belt from Max Holloway. The Australian has since outpointed Holloway a further two times, while also winning his other three title defences – against Brian Ortega on points, and against Chan Sung Jung and Rodriguez via TKO.

Click here to subscribe to The Independent’s Sport YouTube channel for all the latest sports videos.

Source: Read Full Article