Charles Oliveira fell short of his mission to recapture his Lightweight title at UFC 280 last night (Sat. Oct. 22, 2022), losing to Islam Makhachev via submission in the second round of their fight in Abu Dhabi (watch the finish here). It was a disappointing loss for the Brazilian fighter, who had spent fight week declaring, “The champion has a name and it’s Charles Oliveira.”
During the UFC 280 post-fight press conference (watch it here), Oliveira stated simply that he and Makhachev would meet again in the future, and he was looking forward to fighting again as soon as possible.
That most likely means a bout at UFC 283 in Rio de Janeiro.
“Eleven fights ago I lost, and I went back to the gym the same day because I said ‘I’m going to go and get this done,” Oliveira said through his translator. “And together — for all those people that love me and root for me and support me, they’re always behind me — we’re going to train and we’re going to be together on this, and we’re going to turn this around. And this belt’s going to be mine again.”
The next day, Oliveira uploaded a video to his Instagram where he spoke directly to his fans.
“Hey everyone from Brazil and the rest of the world, everyone that supported me and cheered me on,” he said (translation via XcellentMMA). “I just wanted to pass by here to send out a message and simply apologize. I believe that everything I did in training was done right, including the weight cut, but yesterday I wasn’t able to find myself in the fight. Yesterday, Islam was better than I was in terms of timing and did an overall better fight, coming out as champion.
“I haven’t even slept yet because naturally I’ve been reflecting on everything that happened,” he continued. “Thank you, thank you so much to all the people that have sent me both positive and negative messages. The criticism is all part of this crazy sport. I’ll go home now and I’ll dedicate myself, train and conquer once again. So thank you again to everyone that texted me.
“Emotionally, I’m sad for not having done my best,” he continued. “But everyone knows about my faith and that I believe in God. I believe God has something bigger planned for me. So I’m sorry for disappointing my whole nation and everyone who believed in me winning this fight, which unfortunately didn’t happen. Thank you so, so much. I will dedicate myself and return stronger and conquer to please everyone.”
The loss to Makhachev snapped Oliveira’s impressive 11-fight unbeaten streak. Interestingly enough, the win now puts Makhachev on his own 11-fight win streak. While “Do Bronx’ is looking to bounce back in January when UFC returns to Brazil, Makhachev is hoping to face Featherweight champion, Alexander Volkanovski, one month later in February when UFC returns to Australia.
What do you think, Maniacs — do you expect to see Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev facing each other again soon?
For complete UFC 280 results and coverage click here.