UFC featherweight champ Alexander Volkanovski to publish children’s book

Alexander Volkanovski
Image via @alexvolkanovski on Instagram (photographer not listed)

UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski is set to release a children’s book.

Volkanovski announced his book in an interview with 7 News Australia. The book, which will apparently be about his life as a world champion, is targeted for release ahead of his July 11 title fight with Max Holloway.

“It’s going to be about myself, which is pretty cool,” Volkanovski said. “The direction of the book is about being a world champion and everything about it.”

“This is a story about my journey in a storybook type of way.”

Volkanovski says that part of the objective of this book is to remind the world that many fighters have a soft side. As he explained the book’s mission, he snuck in a jab at former UFC lightweight and featherweight champion Conor McGregor, who has previously come under fire for throwing a dolly through a bus window and punching an old man in a bar.

“We aren’t all mugs that want to chuck dollies at buses, that want to hit old men, and that’s what hits the media,” Volkanovski said. “I think this is a good way to show that we’re not all like that. Some of the most respectful people I know are fighters.”

“People always talk about ‘what’s your brand?’” Volkanovski added. “I pride myself on being a respectful, humble type of guy. I’m a loyal family man, that’s what I pride myself on.”

“People are always talk about being a good role model, ‘my kid looks up to you’. (I want) to show everyone we do have some good role models in this sport. We’re proud of that and I’m proud of that as well.”

Alexander Volkanovski is far from the first fighter to release a book—countless fighters have published memoirs, and former UFC strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk eve released a cookbook—but he may be the first to write a children’s book.

Volkanovski became the UFC featherweight champion in December, when he defeated the decision’s long-time ruler Max Holloway by decision. Ahead of their rematch, which co-headlines the UFC 251 card, Volkanovski has vowed to achieve a more decisive result and finish his rival.

“This is a rematch and I’ve got something to prove right now, this is bigger than just a win,” Volkanovski told ESPN. “I don’t want to go out there and just beat him, I’ve already done that. I dominated him for five rounds last time, but they give him a rematch anyway.

“People quickly forget how I did it, there were biased opinions and commentary, everything. So I’m a little bit annoyed, I feel disrespected. I’ve got something to prove this time, I’ll put him away inside the five [rounds] this time. I guarantee you that. I’m sending a message.”