Following the additions of Alexander Volkanovski and Kamaru Usman to UFC 294, the October 21 card received praise from fight fans. The main event features Islam Makhachev and Volkanovski, two pound-for-pound fighters, facing off in a rematch for the former’s UFC lightweight title. The co-main event has former UFC welterweight champion Usman moving to middleweight to face the dangerous Khamzat Chimaev. The event takes place in Abu Dhabi and airs on ESPN+ in the U.S.
It may be hard for replacements to get in fighting shape on just 10 days’ notice, but the event looks significantly better than when it was initially booked. Usman and Chimaev could have been booked years ago. Chimaev is now in his prime, while Usman may be on the tail end of his career. One of the best welterweights of all time, Usman needs to dig deep in a fight that is either a brilliant move or a desperation Hail Mary.
Who has the most to gain/lose at UFC 294? A Makhachev loss means there could be a trilogy with Volkanovski, while Chimaev needs to show if the hype is real. It’s a crossroads fight for Usman: If he loses, he goes 0-3 in his last three. But if he wins, he gets a title shot at UFC middleweight champion Sean Strickland and could become a two-division champion.
WATCH: UFC 294: Islam Makhachev vs. Alexander Volkanovski 2, exclusively on ESPN+
If Alexander Volkanovski, the UFC featherweight champion, wins the Makhachev rematch, there must be a discussion on his status as an all-time great. Where would he rank on the P4P list? If he wins and holds two belts, how many more fights does he have left in his career?
- Debating “best” vs. “great” when it comes to Volkanovski
- Wondering what would be next for Volkanovski, win or lose
- Predicting the results of the main event and co-main event of UFC 294
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