The upcoming UFC 294 event will continue the entertaining kickboxing culture. You are right to expect another upset win, which might get bigger than UFC 293 when Israel Adesanya lost to Strickland.
There are exciting bouts, including Makhachev vs. Volkanovski and a fight between Usman vs. Chimaev. The following article will analyze the magnitude of these fights and other exciting factors fans can expect from UFC 294.
Main Card Fights
The main fights of UFC 294 are exciting. Interestingly, the pre-main fight between Kamaru Usman and Khamzat Chimaev is gaining traction. This is so as Usman is making a debut in the division and joining the fight as a replacement. Here’s the list of the main bouts:
- Islam Makhachev vs. Alexander Volkanovski
- Kamaru Usman vs. Khamzat Chimaev
- Magomed Ankalaev vs. Johnny Walker
- Aliskerov Vs. Alves
With such a lineup of fights, October 20th and 21st in Abu Dhabi, UAE, promises to be legendary for kickboxing fanatics. Also, UFC wagering fans can find some of the best sportsbooks to place bets, with the sport having great and multiple betting chances in a single match.
Islam Makhachev Vs. Alexander Volkanovski
The last match in UAE Abu Dhabi will be a nail-biter. Islam Makhachev will be looking to defend his Lightweight championship against Australian Volkanovski. To the delight of the fans, this is a vengeance match for the challenger. The two fought in UFC 284 on Feb 12, Islam taking the victory via a unanimous decision.
Fans can expect the fight to go the five-round distance again. However, analysts expect Volkanovski to change his strategy to halt the dominant Islam’s fighting style.
Another interesting fact is that Alexander is coming off an impressive UFC 290 win against Y. Rodriguez. Meanwhile, Islam is yet to feature since the Feb 12 matchup.
Kamaru Usman vs. Khamzat Chimaev
Former Welterweight champ Kamaru Usman will debut in the middleweight division. The 20-3-0 fighter got the shot as the initial contender, Paulo Costa, cannot recover quickly after his elbow surgery.
The stakes are high for Usman as he goes against Chimaev, one of the most feared fighters in his weight class. Additionally, he has lost two of his previous fights. Before that, he had gone 15 unbeaten matches, the second-longest winning streak in the UFC.
Therefore, this is arguably the best fight of the event. One fighter (Usman) looks to reclaim his glory, while young and hungry (Chimaev) aims to build his legacy.
Magomed Ankalaev vs. Johnny Walker
Fans will also get a light-heavyweight masterpiece between Russian Ankalaev and Brazilian Walker. The Russian comes to the fight with an impressive 18-1-1 record compared to Walker’s 21-7.
Various factors are motivating the two to fight. Anakalaev, on one hand, last fought in December. This was during a championship match against Jan Blachowicz, which ended in a draw. The frustration does explain his long absence from the Octagon. On the other hand, Walker has had a 3-wins streak, with six previous wins ending in the first round.
This matchup is vital for both parties, with the division’s title spot open. They are all looking to improve their chances of clinching the belt. The current holder, Jamahal Hill, has been forced to drop the title due to an injury.
Ikram Aliskerov vs. Warelly Alves
Another Russian, Aliskerov, will be against the Brazilian, Alves, in a middleweight fight. The two have 14 wins each, with their losses setting them apart (Alves 6, and Aliskerov 1).
However, the Brazilian is more experienced, having fought 5 more fights. Alves also has a better submission style. He’s had more knockouts (4) and 6 submission wins, thus proving his threat to the Russian.
Like Ankalaev vs. Walker, this will be a close fight. This is what all the fans expect from future contenders.
Said Nurmagomedov Vs. Muin Gafurov
Closing off the main card fights is the matchup of 17-3-0 Nurmagomedov against an 18-5-0 Gafurov. The latter comes into the fight as the youngest and the favorite, especially if the fight goes the distance. Said has had troubles past the third round of matchups. His gas tank running low when he needs it the most.
Fans can also watch out for the preliminary fights, which pack great action according to previous events. Here are the top matches to expect in the preliminary stages:
- Flyweight: T. Elliott (20-12-1) Vs. M. Mokaev (10-0-0)
- Lightweight: M. Yahya (12-3-0) Vs. T. Peek (8-1-0)
- Bantamweight: Javid Basharat (14-0-0) Vs. Victor Henry (23-6-0)
- Middleweight: Abu Azaitar (14-3-1) Vs. Sedriques Dumas (8-1-0)
Mark your dates for the UAE UFC connection, with the Middle East nation looking to continue improving its sporting culture. With the ambiance around, traveling and resident fans can expect more than just fighting. So, who on the list will come out victorious in Abu Dhabi? Make your predictions early as we wait for the October action-packed weekend.