Off the back of a wholly dominant second round guillotine win against Neil Magny at UFC Vegas 57 on Saturday, undefeated welterweight contender, Shavkat Rakhmonov called out a slew of opponents, including former two-time title challenger, Stephen Thompson – leading to a response from the Simpsonville striking veteran.
Maintaining his undefeated run, Rakhmonov improved to 16-0 as a professional, also clinching his sixteenth straight finish to maintain his 100 per cent finish rate.
The former M-1 Global welterweight champion managed to lay waste to veteran division staple, Magny inside just two rounds, jumping to a guillotine with seconds remaining in the frame – forcing a submission before the klaxon against the welterweight staple.
Owning eight knockout wins to go with eight other submission finishes, Rakhmonov added Magny to prior UFC victories opposite Alex Oliveira, Michel Prazeres, and Carlston Harris.
Calling for matchups against the likes of the aforenoted, Thompson, and former welterweight title challenger, Jorge Masvidal – Rakhmonov is more than likely set to capture Magny’s #10 rank upon the release of the newly updated official rankings.
“The names I want to face are Stephen Thompson, Nick Diaz, and (Jorge) Masvidal,” Shavkat Rakhmonov said. “Let’s go.”
Stephen Thompson prefers a striking matchup in his next Octagon appearance
Remaining coy on a potential future pairing against Rakhmonov, Thompson stressed that he was interested in facing an opponent who did not pose the threat of a wrestling-heavy approach after recent losses to Gilbert Burns and Belal Muhammad – offering to fight the pair of Masvidal or Diaz next, in fact.
“It’s like gosh, stop taking me down people,” Stephen Thompson said on his official YouTube channel. “I just gotta stop getting taken down, guys. Hey, man – whatever, dude. Let’s go. We’ll see, man. Everybody’s calling me out, not just me – but Masvidal and Nick.”
Before his pair of defeats against both Muhammad and Burns, Thompson, who twiced challenged for undisputed welterweight gold against former champion, Tyron Woodley – managed to defeat Geoff Neal in a UFC Vegas 17 main event back in December 2020.