Former lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov believed that the short-notice change of opponent from Charles Oliveira to Alexander Volkanovski might work in Islam Makhachev’s favor.
“Volkanovski is different than Charles Oliveira. So, yeah, we’re gonna change some things,” Nurmagomedov said in the UFC 294 Embedded: Vlog Series. “But goal is the same. Same goal, same place. But I think Islam have more motivation… Islam is a warrior. When he goes to the cage, he always fights. He’s gonna go deep ocean, it doesn’t matter how deep… And still.”
Khabib: “Islam’s camp was amazing”
Makachev had a long and great camp preparing for his second title defense according to the former champion.
“Islam’s camp was amazing, to be honest,” Nurmagomedov said. “When it was like, 100 days before the fight, Islam began to train hard since this day. Today was last hard sparring day. All hard work is finished.”
Alexander Volkanovski also recently claimed to be ready for twenty five minutes of action if necessary.
“Can I do five rounds? Yeah, I think I can, but I’m not going to sit there and kill myself because I don’t have time to prepare for the worst. But what I do have time for is to prepare for what I believe is going to happen,” Volkanovski said.
The title fight rematch will take place on Saturday October 21 at the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.