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UFC 284: Makhachev vs Volkanovski - Feb 11 🇦🇺


wandshogun09

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Great main card overall. I agree with the decision and it's great that Volk has come out of the show on a loss even better than when he came in.

He has his pick of fights to chose from, he can fight for the undisputed FW title against a very worthy challenger in Yair or he can have a deserved rematch at lightweight which everyone will be wanting. I assume he goes into that rematch as a smaller underdog than he was in this fight.

Yair also looked incredible, his movement is something else, I remember the Holloway fight being an absolute war but I also don't really remember how he lost, did he get pieced up on the feet?

I didn't think Jack would beat Randy Brown so easily, I thought Randy was going to be too much of a step up in competition and I fancied him to beat Jack. I was wrong.

Next week's UFC card looks atrocious. Don't spend too long with the write up on that card Wand, it doesn't deserve it!

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Not much else to add that hasn’t already been said about Makhachev vs Volkanovski. What a fantastic fight. I know it’s only February but that’s the bar set now for FOTY. That’s the fight to beat and it’s gonna be tough.

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The fight looked different than how I’d pictured it in my head. While I felt like Makhachev’s striking was slightly underrated and Volkanovski’s stocky frame could make him hard to grapple, they still both looked better in those areas than I expected. Makhachev did better in the striking than I thought and Volk did fucking phenomenal in the wrestling and getting out from under Makhachev a bunch of times. Which is usually a death sentence. The talk since Saturday night has been all about the scoring, which is a shame really because the fact it was such an amazing fight kind of gets lost as a talking point. Seen a bunch of complaining like it was some awful robbery but I think a lot of that’s coming from Makhachev haters who were just desperate to see him lose. It was the same going into the Oliveira fight but the way that fight played out there was no angle to take to criticise him. This was close and maybe there’s an argument for Volk taking 3 of the rounds. I’ll rewatch it at some point. On first viewing though I felt like Makhachev won. I think it was the second round that I felt was the one it all hinges on for me. The others were relatively easy to score but in a fight like this it only takes one tricky round to throw confusion into the mix. Whatever. Tremendous fight! I think they both came out of it with their stock raised. Especially Volk with him going up in weight.

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It’s not like we didn’t already know but if there’s one thing to take away from this about Volk, this just fully confirmed that he’s not losing that 145 belt anytime soon. The Featherweights are gonna have to settle for fighting for silver until Volk either finally starts declining or he retires. As for what’s next, I’ve seen calls for an immediate rematch and, while I wouldn’t be mad at that, I’d rather see them crack on with a title defence each first. Makhachev vs Dariush is the obvious one if Dariush beats Oliveira in that fight they’re supposed to be having in May. But that could be a long wait for Makhachev’s next fight so fuck knows. As for Volk, we know what’s next…

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Yair Rodriguez had one of the better overall performances of his career for me here. Emmett’s no spring chicken now but he’s tough and dangerous and did go 5 hard rounds with Calvin Kattar before this. He’s no mug. Yair schooled him though, I thought. He looked a class above throughout. Those body kicks were nasty and the finish with the flying knee which basically had Emmett falling into the triangle setup was sweet. Yair just looked sharper and more composed here to me. A lot of the time he’s so wild and that’s part of what makes him a popular fighter to watch but he found the balance here between still being unpredictable and creative with his strikes without getting too reckless. I think a big part of it might just be that he’s actually stayed a bit more active recently. He had that massive layoff before the Holloway fight but since then, he’s probably kept busier in the gym because he had the camp for Ortega over the summer, now this Emmett fight. There weren’t those huge gaps like before.

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Good stuff. Although, like I said, I just don’t see him getting much out of a fight with Volkanovski at all. He deserves the chance and at least it’s a fresh fight. It won’t be boring. But I can’t see it going too well for Yair myself. I think it’ll look very similar to the beating Volk put on the Zombie.

Jack Della Maddalena is definitely legit. I really thought this was gonna be the first proper test for him since signing with the UFC. I thought Randy Brown would be the one to push him and give him some bother but no.

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Made short work of him. Really expected him to have more difficulty with Brown’s height and long frame but once he got in range he made it count and had Brown out of there shortly after. Not a clue what should be next for Maddalena. He clearly needs a step up, I thought this was it but he still breezed through it. Should he get a Top 15 now? It seems quick but I think it’s time. Looking at the rankings, I’d throw him at Michel Pereira. He’s ranked #14 and his scheduled fight with Sean Brady just went tits up when Brady pulled out. Pereira would bring a completely different style for Maddalena to contend with as well. I think it’d be a fun one.

I’ve said it before, Justin Tafa isn’t much good but Christ he has a dig on him.

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Mercifully got it done fast as well. Sent Parker Porter on his way in just over a minute. Tafa’s going nowhere but I’m quite happy to see him kept around for a while yet. This fight shouldn’t have been anywhere near a PPV main card in 2023, or any other year for that matter, but for all the shite that populates the Heavyweight division outside the top few guys, at least Tafa has the good grace to be entertaining to watch.

Was pleasantly surprised by the Crute vs Menifield fight as well actually. Really had zero expectations going into that one and half thought about just skipping through it but I really enjoyed it, to be fair. One of those matchups where I don’t see either of them doing anything beyond this level, but paired off against each other in evenly matched fights like this, there’s some fun to be had.

The Modestas Bukauskas vs Tyson Pedro fight was bittersweet. Sucked seeing Pedro lose because he genuinely seems like such a sound bloke but at the same time it was hard not to be happy for Bukauskas after the way he was let go following that horrid injury against Rountree a while back. I’ve said a few times though, as much as I like Pedro, sadly he’s just not that good. He’s always been an exciting one round fighter but even before that huge layoff, he wasn’t doing that great in his career to where he looked like some can’t miss prospect or something. I think people like him so they’re kind of willing him to do well but this is about his level I’m afraid.

Josh Culibao vs Melsik Baghdasaryan was a good little fight. Again, one I didn’t really have any expectations for going in. I saw their little near scuffle at the weigh in and you could see they were both well up for this one. Baghdasaryan was the instigator there so I was quite pleased to see Culibao choke him.

Kleydson Rodrigues with the flying arse to set up his finish was a highlight for me…

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A flying arse! Never seen that before but it got him a finish in under a minute. It’ll be all the rage now. Norma Dumont could kill someone if she adopts that as a finisher. I can think of worse ways to go, to be honest. I like Rodrigues. I touched on it in the opening post but he’s a student of Big Nog so I was always gonna be pulling for him. Nice to see him get a win like this.

Jamie Mullarkey calling out Paddy Pimblett after his win eh? Actually could see them making a fight like that next and I honestly wouldn’t know who to favour. Mullarkey likes a scrap so there’s always a chance he gets sloppy and Paddy catches him. Which is why I wouldn’t be shocked if the matchmakers went that route. But Mullarkey’s also tough as fuck and the type that just won’t go away. Still think they’re more likely to do Pimblett vs Tony Ferguson myself and just banking on Ferguson’s durability being completely shot. He’d certainly be a better name on the record as well, although even that’s been diminishing with each loss.

Jack Jenkins vs Don Shainis was another fight I almost just skimmed through but I gave it a chance and I was glad I did. It was decent but it probably wasn’t anything special really. But that crowd made this prelim, between two guys I know sod all about, almost feel like a main event. Seriously they were loud as fuck for everything Jenkins did and it really added to the fight for me. Quite liked Jenkins on first impressions as well.

Oh and Loma Lookboonmee getting her first UFC finish after 6 straight decisions was sweet. You could see by her reaction how bad she wanted that elusive finish as well! She was celebrating like she just won the title. Loved seeing this actually. I remember reading a year or so back that she’d been suffering with depression and had even had suicidal thoughts so it was cool to see her get that moment.

Thought it was a cracking show all in all. The undercard looked weak going in but it surpassed my expectations, Yair and Maddalena had excellent standout performances and even the main event, which I did expect big things from, somehow overdelivered!

Edited by wandshogun09
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I know I'm echoing a bunch of people here, but I love Volkanovski. I wasn't a fan initially, but he's grown on me so much over the last few years. He seems like a top bloke too. Most of the Aussie fighters do, to be fair. I get him going back down to 145 to defend his title again, but imagine seeing him taking on some of the top 5 at lightweight? The thought of him stepping into the octagon with Chandler, Poirier, and especially Gaethje, makes my balls tingle. In turn, I'd love to see old Lego Head Cejudo make the jump to Featherweight to take him on. That would be such a fun fight. 

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14 hours ago, Panhead said:

 He seems like a top bloke too. Most of the Aussie fighters do, to be fair. 

True that, I can't really think of one I don't find myself rooting for. Likeable bunch.

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Echo what everyone else has said, this was a top show. Whilst I really enjoyed the main event, I doubt it will be in anyones top 5 at the end of the year. Just lacked that extra bit of magic that you need for those really amazing fights for me.

I would be curious as to what both men weighed in the cage. Volk wasnt manhandled at all, so it could be a moot point, but maybe he'd be wise to spend another six months adding some more muscle weight, and getting closer to equal weights with Islam. This fight was the definition of fine margins, so equalling out the weight difference could make the difference.

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Updated Welterweight rankings and Della’s entered the Top 15!

I suggested him fighting Michel Pereira next but he’s already ranked above him now. I’d still like to see that fight but they probably won’t want him fighting down. Looking at who’s above him, I think they might do the Neil Magny fight now. Magny’s become the ultimate litmus test for guys coming into the rankings and it kind of makes sense as a next move. It all feels like it’s happening mega fast but what can you do when he’s blasting through the opposition the way he has? 

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I listened to the Co-Main Event Podcast today and there was a suggestion for nicknames for Maddalena, now that he seems to have firmly entered the 'he's one of our boy's' club. Jackie Three Names and Jackie Flat Nose. With one of those, and obviously being a straight up assassin, he could have been a main character in the Soprano's. Especially if he just grunted and whacked people. 

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