Rafael dos Anjos claims Islam Makhachev has agreed to fight him in October but manager Ali Abdelaziz is pumping the brakes.
Makhachev has been calling for elite competition. Thus far, he has terrorized the lightweight division. Makhachev is riding an eight-fight winning streak and has just one loss in his pro MMA career. Makhachev is fresh off a submission finish over Thiago Moises. He is the number five-ranked UFC lightweight and many believe he’s got the fighting style to be dominant for many years to come.
It’s clear that dos Anjos is always on the hunt for the biggest fights he can get. The former UFC Lightweight Champion is used to fighting notable names and this time, he’s gunning for Makhachev. The Brazilian took to his Twitter account to claim that not only has Makhachev agreed to fight him, but Khabib Nurmagomedov will come out of retirement to avenge Makhachev should he lose.
“I just heard back from the UFC that Islam accepted to fight me Oct 30, 5 rounds in Abu Dhabi and Khabib agreed to come out of retirement to avenge his brother’s loss after that,” dos Anjos wrote on social media.
Islam Makhachev and Khabib Nurmagomedov’s manager, Ali Abdelaziz, poured cold water on the claim. Here’s what he told MMAFighting’s Damon Martin.
“Sean Shelby reached out about Islam fighting on Oct. 30 cause they value him in this region and I appreciate that. A couple names come up, Rafael’s name came up. Islam’s on the plane going to Russia. Islam is planning to fight in December. I told the UFC when Islam lands, I’ll call Sean Shelby back but it’s nothing else. Listen, I like Rafael. Got no problem with Rafael but he’s trying to catch some hype but whatever he’s saying it’s not true.
“Khabib’s name is not even on the list. The only thing I know is the last time they fought, Khabib beat him 30-26. That’s the only thing I remember from this fight. Khabib is retired and I think people should not talk about Khabib out of respect.”