UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev calls for a rematch between Charles Oliveira and Justin Gaethje

By Harry Kettle - October 20, 2023

Islam Makhachev has called on the UFC to book a lightweight title eliminator rematch between Charles Oliveira and Justin Gaethje.

Charles Oliveira, Justin Gaethje

This weekend, Islam Makhachev was initially scheduled to defend his UFC lightweight championship against Charles Oliveira. Unfortunately, due to a cut in training, Oliveira was forced to pull out. Now, Alexander Volkanovski will be taking his place for a rematch of his own.


This leaves Oliveira somewhat out in the cold, which is where Justin Gaethje also finds himself. The American sensation won the BMF title earlier this year with an emphatic knockout win over Dustin Poirier but now, he has his sights set on the undisputed gold at 155 pounds.

In the eyes of Islam Makhachev, it makes all the sense in the world for the two to square off for the right to face him – if he gets past Alexander Volkanovski, that is.

Makhachev backs Oliveira vs Gaethje 2

“I’m pretty sure that after this fight, there’s already two definite opponents that are ready for a fight with me,” Makhachev said at Wednesday’s UFC 294 media day. “I think the two of them should fight each other so we have an actual No. 1 contender for the belt.”

Makhachev went on to discuss his impending match-up with Volkanovski.

“Honestly, after the first fight, many people talking about the fight and many people wanting to watch this rematch,” Makhachev said. “I’m really happy because right now they can give me anyone, but I’m really happy because they give me Volkanovski because last time I fought in his arena, his area. Now it’s Abu Dhabi and everything on my side.”

Quotes via MMA Junkie

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Charles Oliveira Islam Makhachev Justin Gaethje UFC