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Charles Oliveira had ‘10 minutes off on a bad night’ vs. Islam Makhachev, expects late 2023 rematch

UFC 280: Oliveira v Makhachev Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

Charles Oliveira has redemption on his mind.

The former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Lightweight champion is on the comeback trail after suffering an Oct. 2022 setback at UFC 280. Tasked with rising Dagestani phenom, Islam Makhachev, Oliveira succumbed to the pressure of his opponent’s refined and dominant overall game.

Makhachev defeated Oliveira via a second-round arm-triangle choke submission (watch highlights) to become the new titleholder. The loss snapped a thrilling 11-fight stretch for “Do Bronx” and he feels it was simply a bad night at the office.

“With all due respect, I had 10 minutes off on a bad night,” Oliveira said at a UFC 283 fan Q&A (h/t MMA Fighting). “I wouldn’t change anything to fight Islam Makhachev. This fight will happen again. Be sure of that, this fight will happen. I’ll fight in April or May, no matter who that is, and God will bless me with a win, and I’ll have my rematch with Islam Makhachev by the end of the year.

“We have to aim high,” he continued. “Maybe fight in the United States in May and then come back to fighting in Brazil by the end of the year — if it’s in Sao Paulo, even better — and who knows, maybe fight for the belt again. That would be great.”

According to Oliveira, he was offered an instant rematch opportunity at Makhachev for this past weekend’s (Jan. 21, 2023) UFC 283 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil but ultimately declined because he wasn’t yet emotionally ready. Instead, Oliveira continues waiting for his next opponent while Makhachev is set to try and defend his crown against Featherweight titlist, Alexander Volkanovski, at UFC 284 in Perth, Australia on Feb. 11, 2023.

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