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No excuses! Alex Volkanovski doesn’t want Khabib asterisk from Makhachev mourners at UFC 284

UFC Fight Night: Makhachev v Moises Photo by Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC

Reigning UFC featherweight champion Alex Volkanovski plans to steamroll current UFC lightweight titleholder Islam Makhachev in the UFC 284 pay-per-view (PPV) main event later this month in Perth, Western Australia, and when he does, “The Great” doesn’t want fans to blame it on the disappearing act from Makhachev mentor Khabib Nurmagomedov.

“I know people push narratives and all that type of stuff,” Volkanovski told The MMA Hour. “At the end of the day, Islam is a great fighter. He’s the one who’s going in there and doing his work, and Khabib will tell you that himself. So again, if my hand gets raised, don’t be [complaining]. These are excuses. He’s fought plenty of times with Khabib not in his corner.”

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CHAMPIONSHIP TRILOGY! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to The O2 in London England, on Sat., March 18, 2023, with newly-minted Welterweight kingpin, Leon Edwards, running it back with former 170-pound champion, Kamaru Usman, for a third (and likely final) time. In UFC 286’s pay-per-view (PPV) co-main event, all-action Lightweight knockout artists, Justin Gaethje and Rafael Fiziev, will lock horns with the winner inching closer to a future Lightweight title shot.

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Nurmagomedov, who walked away from combat sports late last year, has been a fixture in the Makhachev fight camp for most of his career. That said, American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) head coach Javier Mendez insists an “Eagle” absence is far from a deal breaker.

“He’s done it before and he’s a great fighter,” Volkanovski continued. “He’s going to turn up and show up in the Octagon anyway, even if Khabib is there or not. So I’m preparing for the same Islam that I’ve seen, and again, if things go how I plan on them going, don’t start changing narratives and start using all these excuses, because it’s the guy in front of him that’s the problem.”

Remember that will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 284 fight card right here, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard on ESPN/ESPN+ at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC 284: “Islam vs. Volkanovski” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

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