Alexander Volkanovski Wants Khabib Nurmagomedov’s Belt- Plans to Shift to Lightweight

Published 12/04/2020, 6:00 AM EST
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JULY 12: Alexander Volkanovski of Australia celebrates after his split-decision victory over Max Holloway in their UFC featherweight championship fight during the UFC 251 event at Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on July 12, 2020 on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)


UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski has achieved what only a select few have done in their career. He has conquered one division but believes that it is not enough. The Aussie born champion believes he has the skills to prove himself at 155 pounds as well.

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He could move up to challenge for Khabib Nurmagomedov’s lightweight title. Speaking to ESPN’s Sam Bruce, ‘The Great’ said, “While I might have goals in front of me, they’re not my end goals.”

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JULY 10: Alexander Volkanovski of Australia poses on the scale during the UFC 251 official weigh-in inside Flash Forum at UFC Fight Island on July 10, 2020 on Yas Island Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Volkanovski continued, “So my goal might be the belt, it might be defending that belt, and my goal is still to defend that [featherweight] belt, but I want to be the best fighter there is.”… And to do so, I want to move up and fight [at lightweight] as well.”

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Alexander ‘The Great’, first captured the featherweight gold against Max Holloway at UFC 245 in December 2019. This stunned fans, as Holloway was the favorite ahead of the fight. 

Alexander Volkanovski loves the doubters

In his first title defense, Volkanovski would once again face Holloway. This time the fight would be much closer with the Australian grinding out a split decision win to retain his title. He said, “I’ve got a division that I want to take out, I want to be the best the featherweights have seen, so I want a couple of defenses here.”

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ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JULY 12: (L-R) Alexander Volkanovski of Australia punches Max Holloway in their UFC featherweight championship fight during the UFC 251 event at Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on July 12, 2020 on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Volkanovski was a relatively unknown commodity to most UFC fans until his title fight with Max Holloway. But, that never bothered him. He said, “People are going to doubt me. … I love those doubters, and it drives me more, it motivates me more, and I’ll just go out and prove them wrong.”

Brian Ortega looks to be next in line to challenge Volkanovski. ‘T-City’ put on a clinical performance to beat the Korean Zombie. With a division filled with the likes of Calvin Kattar, Zabit Magomedsharipov, and Yair Rodriguez, the Australian will have no plans to move up just yet.

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Read: Yair Rodriguez Handed a Six-Month Suspension By USADA 

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Keith Dsouza

193 articles

Keith D'Souza is part of the Essentially Sports MMA writing team. Having followed the sport since 2013, some of his favorite fighters include Max Holloway, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor, and Johny Hendricks. Keith also runs PureMMAIndia, a brand that promotes MMA over social media which aims at growing the sport in India.

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