Ali Abdelaziz offers Islam Makhachev fight to Tony Ferguson at UFC 254

Ali Abdelaziz has made an offer to Tony Ferguson. The Dominance MMA CEO tweeted to El Cucuy, asking him if he wanted to step in to face Islam Makhachev at UFC 254.

His client is currently without an opponent, after news dropped that Rafael Dos Anjos was forced to withdraw after testing positive for Covid-19.

Abdelaziz’s tweet has sought to entice Ferguson, by suggesting that Makhachev is the closest thing to Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Makhachev and his team appear to be scrambling to secure a big name opponent in time for the show. While his manager has been hitting up the former interim champion, Makhachev has called out newcomer Michael Chandler.

He’s also opened the door to other top 10 contenders, including 4th-ranked Dan Hooker and 6th-ranked Charles Oliveira.

Makhachev is currently ranked 12th at lightweight. He’s widely viewed as one of the most dangerous fighters in the division. The 29-year-old has a record of 18-1 and is riding a 6-fight winning streak. It’s now been over five years since he last suffered defeat, having lost in the first round against Adriano Martins at UFC 192 in 2015. Having strung together so many victories, Makhachev is expected to crack the top-10 before long. Rafael Dos Anjos may not have been in the top-15, but he was a big name. He was also the former champion.

Now, Makhachev will be hoping to find a suitable replacement in time. The pandemic has kept him on ice for a while, and he’s not had a fight for over a year. His last bout was a win over Davi Ramos at UFC 242 back in September 2019.

Ferguson is an interesting call-out by the Russian. He was recently expected to take on Dustin Poirier on the same card but the fight never came to fruition due to disagreements about the Diamond’s purse.

Since then, Ferguson has said he’s open to a fight with Nick Diaz at welterweight. The California native is unpredictable, but it would be a surprise to see him accept a fight with an opponent who is nine places below him in the rankings.

Who would you most like to see step in to take RDA’s place?