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UFC 251: Alexander Volkanovski wants to test himself against Khabib – ‘I’m very hard to hold down’

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UFC 249 Khabib v Ferguson: Press Conference Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

Current Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Featherweight champion, Alexander Volkanovski, staked his claim as the best 145-pound fighter on the planet after he dominated ex-division kingpin, Max Holloway, for five rounds at UFC 245 in December of 2019.

And while “The Great” knows he has a lot to accomplish in his division despite winning all eight of his UFC fights, 18 in a row overall, he hopes to one day make a leap up to the Lightweight division. And it’s all in hopes of getting the opportunity to test himself against undefeated (28-0,12-0 UFC) division champion, Khabib Nurmagomedov.

“I don’t like people chasing other divisions, but (fighting Nurmagomedov) is definitely an option,” Volkanovski told The Score. “Right now, got a belt to defend, and then there’s probably going be No. 1 contender (after that). But I mean early next year, if something comes to me, like that fight, I’ll have to take it.”

While Khabib’s bread and butter is no secret, Volkanovski says “The Eagle” may eventually score a takedown on him, but trying to keep him down is another story, as he considers himself a “freak” when it comes to getting back to his feet.

“Khabib is one of the GOATs as well. Nothing but respect for the dude,” Volkanovski said. “But I’m very, very hard to hold down. I’ve obviously got the brains. I’ve got the cardio. I’m a freak when it comes to holding on the ground; it’s just almost impossible holding me on the ground.

“Nothing but respect to all the fighters that are in the UFC, but every single one of us wants to prove something. And you know, eventually, I want to prove myself in that lightweight division too.”

For now, “The Great” is set to rematch Holloway at the upcoming UFC 251 pay-per-view (PPV) event on July 11 on “Fight Island.” As for Khabib, he will eventually face Justin Gaethje a title unification match later this year, though that fight has to be made official.