This past Saturday night in the main event of UFC 284, the lightweight title was on the line and many believed the top P4P spot in the rankings was on the line. Featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski (25-2) moved up to take on lightweight champion Islam Makhachev (24-1).
The fight was extremely competitive between the top two in the P4P rankings. After a clear first round for Makhachev, rounds two and three were incredibly competitive. I personally scored them for Volk, but don’t have any issues with Islam Makhachev getting the second round.
The third was pretty clear to Volkanovski. In the fourth round, Makhachev timed a beautiful takedown and held Volk down for the fourth. No damage was done in the round, but a ton of control. The fifth round was a beat down by the featherweight champion.
He kept the fight standing and dropped Makhachev. In the final minute, he rained down massive shots. After the fight was over, you had the feeling that if there was one more round, Volk would’ve likely won by finish. That said, the decision was read and Islam Makhachev remained the UFC lightweight champion.
UFC’s P4P #1
With the win, even the UFC’s Twitter account was labeling Islam Makhachev as the P4P top fighter in the world. However, the official rankings didn’t come out until this morning. Well, the rankings came out today and the top spot remains unchanged. Alexander Volkanovski is still the P4P top fighter in the promotion and that’s the right call.
I have no issue with anyone saying Islam Makhachev won the fight. He had a great performance. That said, as crazy as it sounds, I didn’t walk away from Saturday night thinking that Islam Makhachev was a better P4P fighter than Alexander Volkanovski.
In my personal rankings, I still have Volk getting that top spot. The only guy who can dethrone him as of now is Jon Jones if he’s able to run through Ciryl Gane next month to become the heavyweight champion. Sorry Islam, but there’s more work for you to do to get that top spot in the rankings.