Charles Oliveira expects to recapture the lightweight title when he collides with top contender Islam Makhachev in the UFC 280 pay-per-view (PPV) main event on Sat. (Oct. 22, 2022) at Etihad Arena on “Fight Island” in Abu Dhabi.
A victory is likely to send Oliveira into a lightweight title defense against featherweight champion and UFC 280 backup Alex Volkanovski, preferably at the UFC 283 event in Rio, but “Do Bronx” expects “The Great” to reciprocate when the promotion heads to Perth for UFC 283.
“First of all, we’re gonna focus on what happens [at UFC 280],” Oliveira told reporters through his translator at the UFC 280 media day. “My timing is to actually fight in Brazil afterwards. If we’re gonna make this happen with Volkanovski, we’re gonna fight in two weight divisions. I can fight [in Australia] in February but for his belt. I have a great team to get down to 145.”
Dropping back down to featherweight may sound like a bad idea on paper, especially considering Oliveira — fresh off his weight cutting disaster at UFC 274 in Phoenix — once missed the 145-pound mark by a whopping nine pounds.
It should also be noted that UFC 283 and UFC 284 are separated by just three weeks, which means the promotion will have to pick one or the other. Unless Makhachev prevails and puts an end to the Oliveira vs. Volkanovski fantasy matchmaking.
We’ll find out in just a few days.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 280 fight card RIGHT HERE, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches at 10 a.m. ET, followed by the remaining undercard balance on ESPN+/ESPNews at 12 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 2 p.m. ET on ESPN+.
To check out the latest and greatest UFC 280: “Oliveira vs. Makhachev” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here. For the complete UFC 280 fight card and PPV line up click here.