Featherweight contender Yair Rodriguez has explained why he would “benefit” from Alexander Volkanovski beating Islam Makhachev in their upcoming lightweight title fight at UFC 284.
Rodriguez will be rooting for Volkanovski to become a two-weight-division champion but does realise the Australian’s monumental task ahead of him.
Volkanovski is set to challenge for Makhachev’s newly attained lightweight championship in the UFC 284 main event. The event takes place in Perth, Australia, on Feb.11. Rodriguez will compete alongside Volkanovski and Makhachev on the same card as he prepares to face Josh Emmet for the interim featherweight title.
The Mexican international gave his thoughts on the whole situation:
Yair Rodriguez weighs in on Alexander Volkanovski vs. Islam Makhachev
“I think it’s a very complicated fight for the champion at 145 pounds,” Rodriguez told MMA Junkie in Spanish. “I think it’s a fight that can get complicated for any fighter because of the style that Islam Makhachev has.
“However, I don’t think it’s impossible to beat him. If he shows up with a good strategy, keeps his mobility and fights the way he fights, he could probably win. If I could put it in percentages, I’d give Islam Makhachev an 80 percent chance in winning. But the scale can always shift either way. This game often depends on strategy and preparation each fighter carries, so we’ll see how Alexander Volkanovski can shift the scale.”
Although the odds are highly in Makhachev’s favour to defend the 155lbs title, Rodriguez is hopeful Volkanovski can cause a major upset, which would make the magnitude of a meeting between the pair even bigger if Rodriguez can successfully defeat Emmett.
“For me, it’s better for Alexander Volkanovski to win because if I get to face him, it would be even a bigger challenge,” Rodriguez said. “I’d be fighting the double champion, right? So for me, it’s better for him to win.
“I have nothing against Islam or Volkanovski – actually, quite the opposite. I have the utmost respect for them. Let the best man win. But it would be in my benefit for Alexander Volkanovski to win, obviously. Just in terms of my career, I’d like for him to win.”
Quotes via MMA Junkie
What do you think is the likelihood of Alexander Volkanovski and Yair Rodriguez both being victorious at UFC 284? Are both men on a collision course to collide? Let us know!