Ilia Topuria named Islam Makhachev as his next target

After defeating Alexander Volkanovski, new UFC featherweight champion Elijah Topuria has set himself another big goal, and next year he plans to challenge the best fighter regardless of weight class, Islam Makhachev.

According to the Spanish-Georgian welterweight, he plans to move up to lightweight after his first title defense.

“The three opponents I would most like to see in my next fight are Conor McGregor, Max Holloway or Sean O’Malley,” Topuria told Eurosport. “I want to have one more fight before the end of the year and then the next target is Islam Makhachev. It’s a fight that will bring me closer to the top spot in the rankings of the best fighters regardless of weight. I see myself as a double champion.”

A week ago at UFC 298 in Anaheim, Elijah Topuria knocked out Alex Volkanovski in the second round to take the UFC featherweight championship belt from the Australian, while Islam Makhachev is scheduled to make a lightweight title defense this summer against the winner of a challenger bout between Charles Oliveira and Arman Tsarukyan, who will meet April 13 at UFC 300 in Las Vegas.

The Russian fighter currently tops the UFC’s P4P rankings, where Topuria is ranked fifth following his win over Volkanovski.