Alex Oliveira returns to the Octagon at UFC 254 when he takes on Shavkat Rakhmonov

Alex Oliveira

UFC welterweight fan-favorite Alex Oliveira will return to the Octagon at UFC 254 when he takes on promotional newcomer Shavkat Rakhmonov.

The Brazilain “Cowboy” is one of the most fan-friendly fighters in the UFC welterweight division and his addition to the UFC 254 Fight Island pay-per-view card headlined by Khabib Nurmagomedov and Justin Gaethje is a welcome one. Oliveira had been stumping for a fight with Khamzat Chimaev, and while the UFC didn’t give him that fight, it did manage to book him for what should be a very interesting matchup against Rakhmonov.

AG Fight was the first to break the news of Oliveira vs. Rakhmonov on Fight Island. It should be noted that Oliveira is filling in on short notice for Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos.

Oliveira (22-8-1, 2 NC) is a 32-year-old veteran of the Octagon who has quietly racked up and impressive UFC record of 11-5, 1 NC while fighting at both lightweight and welterweight. In his last two fights, “Cowboy” has put up back-to-back impressive wins over Max Griffin and Peter Sobotta, which led to the retirement of the latter. Oliveira is not a top-15 ranked welterweight but he’s someone who is probably top-30 or so in the division. He’s always in fun fights win or lose and makes the perfect gatekeeper at 170lbs.

Rakhmonov (12-0) is a 25-year-old prospect from Kazhakstan who has gone undefeated in his first 12 pro fights. In fact, all 12 of his professional wins are by knockout and he won the M-1 Challenge welterweight title in his last fight. The UFC is obviously very high on Rakhmonov and based on his resume you can understand why. He has been ultra-impressive of far in his young career and this fight against Oliveira should be fantastic. It’s an addition to UFC 254 that makes what was already a great card a little bit better.

Who do you think wins, Alex Oliveira or Shavkat Rakhmonov?