After an unbeaten run inside the Octagon that’s left him on the 145-pound throne and with four rubies on the gold he’s held since a 2019 victory over Max Holloway, Volkanovski is looking to enhance his legacy in the sport by adding a second belt to his mantle.
The Australian will have the chance to do so in front of his home fans next February, when he challenges the recently began reign of Makhachev in the main event of UFC 284, set for Perth’s RAC Arena.
Despite riding a 22-fight win streak in professional MMA and holding just one loss at welterweight on his impressive record, Volkanovski opened as a sizable underdog for his pursuit of champ-champ status.
More than just odds, though, “The Great” has had his chances of victory doubted by many fans and pundits. He’s now demanded that those detractors don’t change the narrative surrounding Makhachev’s apparent invincibility if and when he gets the job done on February 11.
Volkanovski: ‘Don’t Change The Narrative When I Win’
During a recent video on his YouTube channel, Volkanovski addressed what will certainly be his biggest test to date following the matchup’s official announcement last weekend.
The Aussie titleholder started by addressing those who believe he’s taken up too difficult of a task, admitting that it’s frustrating to see people question his decision to challenge himself in the toughest ways possible.
“One thing I’ve been thinking about is people talking about how much of a challenge this is, right? Almost people thinking I’m silly for taking this,” Volkanovski said. “It’s sort of frustrating to see people think (that).
“Why wouldn’t you challenge yourself? We should always challenge ourselves. Why do people doubt themselves and don’t think they can accomplish things that, yeah, might be a hard task, but you should not doubt yourself,” Volkanovski added. “Trust me, nothing’s impossible, and I’m gonna show you February (11).”
With that in mind, Volkanovski demanded that his doubters maintain the same energy about Makhachev’s unstoppable wrestling arsenal and favorite status once he upsets the odds on home soil next year.
“I just want everyone to remember what they’re saying about this as well,” Volkanovski stated. “There’s a lot of people that are like, ‘Man, I don’t know, this is a big ask.’ Yeah, he’s one of the most feared lightweights, ‘I’m crazy for doing this, it’s unthinkable, the impossible task,’ people are trying to put that out there. I just want people to remember them saying that. Remember this doubt people are saying.
“If this is such a big ask, (so) unthinkable… you guys better remember that when I get the job done. Reward me, reward me for taking on someone like that. Don’t change the narrative… telling me, ‘Islam’s alright, but his standup’s not good, if he doesn’t take you down, blah, blah, blah.’ Hey, you said that no one could stop his takedown. Remember that same energy.”
Will Alexander Volkanovski prove his doubters wrong when he faces Islam Makhachev at UFC 284?
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