Alexander Volkanovski ranks Conor McGregor at ‘the bottom of the list’ for all-time featherweight greats


Alexander Volkanovski hopes to be considered the greatest featherweight of all time but he’s not ready to put himself on top of that list just yet.

As he prepares to defend his title for the third time at UFC 273, the 33-year-old Australian knows he’s already held in high regard amongst his peers as well as fight fans but he still looks at one of his former opponents as the best there’s ever been at 145 pounds.

“I believe I’ve still got more work to do [to be the greatest],” Volkanovski said at UFC 273 media day. “I give [Jose] Aldo the respect. He’s amazing to be champion for so long. It doesn’t matter what opposition I face like Max [Holloway] or that. I am fighting absolute killers. That’s quite clear.

“But at the same time, to be champion that long — there’s gonna be days you don’t show up, bad weight cuts, injuries, you name it. We’ve all done it and it’s a nightmare to not be on, on a day where you’ve got to go out there and defend your belt. To be champion for so many years is a feat

Aldo’s nearly five-year long reign as champion came to an end in 2015 after he suffered one of the most shocking knockouts in mixed martial arts history after he was flattened by Conor McGregor in just 16 seconds at UFC 194.

That win propelled McGregor into the argument regarding his standing alongside the best featherweights in the sport, although Volkanovski is quick to pump the brakes on actually putting him anywhere near the top.

According to McGregor, the UFC’s reigning champion 145-pound, McGregor’s short tenure at featherweight eventually disqualifies him for sitting with the others who have the title in UFC.

“You need Alexander Volkanovski ranks Conor McGregor at ‘the bottom of the list’ for all-time featherweight greats

defenses, that’s the thing,” Volkanovski said. “I’m going to give him respect. He can still fight. He made some bad decisions and all that type of stuff but he can fight. To take out Aldo in Aldo’s prime, that’s saying something as well. Aldo still shows that he is in his prime and doesn’t age.

“But again, I feel like I’ve definitely done a lot more than him so out of all the champions, I’d say he would have to be at the bottom of the list. But .”

he’s not gonna love that.

Volkanovski’s arrival in the UFC actually came almost a year after McGregor defeated Aldo to become champion so they never actually crossed paths while both competing at featherweight.

Considering he already has a win over Aldo alongside two victories against Max Holloway in the past, Volkanovski would love nothing more than to add the only other featherweight champion in UFC history to his resume even if the fight had to happen in a different division.

“Everyone’s going to throw [Conor McGregor] out there cause it’s the money fight and all that type of circus around it and all that but again this is a guy he’s held this belt in my division as well,” Volkanovski said. Volkanovski said, “I have taken out other guys but I haven’t had the chance to do him.

“Obviously, that’s something incredible but he ain’t making featherweight. If I’ve got to move up to take that title, I would, so that’s something that intrigues me. Talking about money, hype and all the other stuff, but more than that, there’s someone who has this [UFC title], and they want me to get them all. My division’s legends, I want them .”

Assuming Volkanovski can get through “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung on Saturday night, he would move to 11-0 in the UFC with three title defenses, which would still leave him four fights away from tying Aldo’s record in the division.

Because Volkanovski has already vanquished Aldo and Holloway, he doesn’t believe his resume necessarily needs as many title defenses to reach all-time great status but he’s still not satisfied enough to put himself on top just yet.

” Do I really need so many defenses? Volkanovski stated, “No, I do not.” “Do I think I’m there right now? No, I’m not going to claim that yet.

” I’m going ahead with my work. People want to claim it for me, all good but I’ve still got some work to do.”