Breaking – Dana White denies Islam Makhachev – Charles Oliveira title fight rematch will headline UFC 297 in January

Dana White denies Islam Makhachev will fight Charles Oliveira in title rematch at UFC 297 in January

Despite an initial report overnight claiming a planned lightweight title fight rematch between defending champion, Islam Makhachev, and former divisional gold holder, Charles Oliveira would headline UFC 297 on January 20. from Toronto, Canada, promotional boss, Dana White has claimed those reports are firmly wide of the mark.

Last night, Ariel Helwani reported how a lightweight championship fight between Makhachev and rival, Oliveira is currently planned to take main event honors at UFC 297 in January of next year – with an initially earmarked featherweight title fight between Alexander Volkanovski, and Ilia Topuria subsequently pushed a month later to UFC 298 in February.

READ MORE:  Max Holloway urged to withdraw from BMF title fight with Justin Gaethje at UFC 300: 'He will hurt you'

However, Makhachev’s manager, Dominance MMA leader, Ali Abdelaziz rubbished those reports from Helwani, describing them as inaccurate. 

Dana White denis Islam Makhachev x Charles Oliveira 2 will feature at UFC 297

And this evening, as per ESPN reporter, Brett Okamoto, UFC CEO, White has informed him how Makhachev and Oliveira will not be featuring next January at UFC 297 in ‘The Great White North’.

Islam Makhachev vs. Charles Oliveira 2 will not headline UFC 297 next month (sic) in Toronto, per Dana White,’ Okamoto posted on his official X account. “As of now, Oliveira does appear to be most likely 155 (pound) (title) challenger, although White tells ESPN, “Anything is possible, it’s whenever both are ready.” 

READ MORE:  Daniel Cormier hits back at Nate Diaz amid issue over UFC 306 return: 'We're not in the same stratosphere'

“Makhachev’s manager @AliAbdelaziz00 tells ESPN he has informed the UFC the earliest Makhachev will be ready to defend his title is March 9.” 

Scheduled to headline UFC 294 last month in a championship rematch with Makhachev, Sao Paulo finishing ace, Oliveira was forced out of the title bout in Abu Dhabi, UAE – after he suffered a nasty laceration over his right eye during the final sparring session of his training camp.

READ MORE:  Manager confirms Islam Makhachev set to fight twice this year ahead of expected UFC return

In October of last year, Makhachev minted himself as the undisputed lightweight champion, landing the vacant crown with a stunning second round arm-triangle submission win over the above-mentioned, Oliveira in the Middle East. 

Who wins in a future title rematch: Islam Makhachev or Charles Oliveira?