Late last month at the UFC 277 pay-per-view, Ankalaev threw his name into the title contention hat with a second-round TKO victory over one-time title challenger Anthony Smith. With the result, which extended his win streak to nine, the Dagestani ascended to #3 in the rankings.
That’s one place behind his desired next opponent, Blachowicz. Since adding the name of “Lionheart” to his résumé, Ankalaev has quickly gone about trying to secure his next outing, repeatedly calling out the Polish former champion on social media.
In one tweet, Ankalaev branded a clash between himself and the #2-ranked Blachowicz a “done deal,” perhaps insinuating that it’s the only option for the former titleholder given reigning king Jiří Procházka’s desire to run it back with Glover Teixeira for his first defense later this year.
But the Russian contender perhaps didn’t get the response he was after, with Blachowicz picking up on his English rather than showing any interest in a potential Octagon meeting down the line.
Blachowicz Dimisses “Dumb” Ankalaev, Keeps Sights On Gold
By the looks of things, Blachowicz, who defended the title against middleweight champion Israel Adesanya before dropping it to Teixeira in Abu Dhabi last October, is still targeting his Czech Republic counterpart.
As well as being present for Procházka’s crowning at UFC 275, the Pole repeatedly called for the next shot in interviews, with “Denisa” also seemingly favoring the blockbuster all-European showdown.
But having since seen the champ change his tune, Blachowicz is picking up his attempts to convince the UFC of his credentials. On Twitter, the 39-year-old addressed Dana White, promising to deliver the “biggest MMA fight in Europe’s history” should he be given the chance to regain the 205-pound belt.
“@danawhite – no bullshit, no politics, no nonsense,” Blachowicz wrote. “Give me Prochazka and I’ll give you the biggest MMA fight in Europe’s history. Unlike him I always keep my word.”
Rather than the UFC president, Blachowicz’s tweets attracted the attention of Ankalaev, who suggested that his fellow top-five contender hasn’t earned a title shot and called on the promotion to prevent the Pole from ‘running’ away from him.
In response, Blachowicz reminded the Dagestani of his memorable journey from possible release to the top step of the light heavyweight ladder.
“MMA math doesn’t work. I was almost out of the UFC, made adjustments and became the Champ.”
In another post, Ankalaev revealed that he’s accepted an offer from the UFC to face Blachowicz, reiterating that he’s ready. He also appeared to question Blachowicz’s stardom based on the population of Poland.
The former champ responded by encouraging Ankalaev to focus on his English after making such a “dumb statement.”
“This is a dumb statement. Learn to read with comprehension.”
While it appears that we’re no sooner to knowing whether this matchup will go ahead, some sort of foundation for an intriguing backstory is at least being created through their social media interactions.
With Ankalaev’s claims, it appears that the ball is in Blachowicz’s park. Perhaps it’ll take confirmation of Procházka vs. Teixeira 2 before the Pole agrees to fight the man below him in the pecking order.
Would you like to see Jan Blachowicz vs. Magomed Ankalaev next?