The best fighter in the world, regardless of weight category, Alexander Volkanovski, failed to take the UFC lightweight championship belt from Islam Makhachev, but gave the Russian fighter the toughest fight of his career.
The fight, which headlined UFC 284 in Perth, went the full distance and ended with a unanimous decision win for Makhachev, 49-46 and 48-47 twice.
In each of the rounds, the Russian managed to transfer his opponent with great difficulty, but the Australian either quickly got up, or the matter was limited to control without serious threats from Makhachev. At the same time, the Australian fighter did not have an advantage in the standing position, and over and over again he missed single blows from the Russian, which knocked down his attempts to increase the pace.
However, a little over a minute before the end of the fight, the Russian made a mistake and was knocked down, missing a right hand, after which he was forced to defend himself on his back from the attacks of the Australian, who was trying to build on his success, until the final siren.
In a post-match interview, Islam Makhachev stated that he needed such tough fights to get better, and also expressed his readiness to defend against any legitimate contender whose right to a title fight would not be in doubt.
In the co-main event of the event, Yair Rodriguez won the interim UFC Featherweight Championship belt by defeating Josh Emmett in spectacular style. Having managed in one and a half rounds not only to demonstrate his diverse arsenal, but also to miss several dangerous blows from the opponent, at the end of the second five-minute period, the Mexican flew into the opponent with a knee strike in a jump, allowing the shocked Emmett to cover himself, and then put an end to the fight, holding a strangulation with a triangle.
In the third most important event of the tournament, Australian welterweight Jack Della Maddalena scored his fourth stoppage victory in a row in the UFC, finishing in the first round with a rear naked choke of Jamaican Randy Brown, after knocking down his opponent with a right hook.
Among other results of the event, we note the unsuccessful debut in the light weight category of the Russian Zubaira Tukhugov, who in the first fight of the early preliminary card after three rounds lost by a separate decision to the Brazilian rookie of the organization Elvis Brenner.
Justin Tafa, Joshua Kulibao, Claydson Rodriguez and Loma Lukbunmee recorded early victories.
All UFC 284 results.