Alex Volkanovski tells Ilia Topuria to step up and start acting like a champion: “He’s saying no to everyone”

By Susan Cox - May 1, 2024

Alex Volkanovski is telling Ilia Topuria to step up and start acting like a champion.

Alexander Volkanovski and Ilia Topuria

The undefeated Topuria is the current UFC featherweight champion.

It was Volkanovski (26-4 MMA) vs. Topuria (15-0 MMA) this past February at UFC 298 which resulted in a KO victory and crown for ‘El Matador‘.

The 27-year-old Topuria has come under criticism for who he is and is not looking to fight next in the Octagon.

Alex Volkanovski, speaking with ‘FOX Sports’ shared his thoughts on Ilia Topuria:

“Right now, he’s saying ‘no’ to everyone. That’s the problem. He’s saying no to Max Holloway, to Brian Ortega, to me, you name it. Not wanting to come to Australia, okay, but he’s saying ‘no’ to everyone. He’s saying ‘I don’t want to fight any of the contenders … I want to fight Conor McGregor’. That just puts a sour taste in people’s mouths. Because when you hold the belt, there is a responsibility that comes with that, a pressure. You can’t just be saying ‘nah, nah, nah’, that’s crazy — he’s not going about things the right way.”

Continuing, ‘The Great’, who knows a thing or two about being champion, shared (h/t MMAMania):

“Obviously I don’t want to talk bad about the bloke, because he took his shot, won and now has to play the game, which I understand. But be a champion. People got used to how I acted as champion. Now you’ve got a guy, who knows when he wants to fight? Does he even want a fight soon? Probably not. But the UFC will likely make him. Maybe this is just his way of hyping things up, saying no to everyone and then — bang — he signs for a fight. I just hope he makes better decisions because I don’t think he’s a bad kid. But now he’s calling out Conor McGregor? Or Islam Makhachev? Topuria has still got more to prove.”

Do you agree with Alex Volkanovski that Ilia Topuria has a responsibility as the holder of the belt to defend his title in a timely manner against a deserving opponent? Would you like to see a Volkanovski vs. Topuria rematch in the near future?

Share your thoughts in the comment section PENN Nation!

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Alex Volkanovski Ilia Topuria UFC