UFC 294: Islam Makhachev vs Charles Oliveira | The Rematch of the Year

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UFC 294, scheduled for October 21, 2023, at the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, promises to be a night of unparalleled excitement. The main event will feature a much-anticipated rematch between the reigning UFC Lightweight Champion. Islam Makhachev, and the former champion, Charles Oliveira. Their previous encounter in February 2023 left fans craving more action, and this rematch is poised to deliver just that.

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Makhachev vs Oliveira: A Breakdown of the Matchup

Islam Makhachev

Islam Makhachev, a 31-year-old Russian fighter, stands as one of the premier grapplers in the UFC today. With an impressive professional record of 23 wins and only 1 loss, all via submission, Makhachev has been on an unstoppable streak.

Makhachev’s fighting style bears a resemblance to that of the legendary Khabib Nurmagomedov. He’s renowned for his relentless pressure and uncanny ability to take opponents down to the canvas. Once he establishes control on the ground, escaping his grasp becomes an arduous task.

Remarkably, Makhachev’s sole professional loss occurred early in his career. Since then, he has clinched an impressive 23 consecutive victories. His list of conquests includes notable names like Dan Hooker, Thiago Moises, and Bobby Green, cementing his status as a dominant force in the lightweight division.

Charles Oliveira

Charles Oliveira, a 33-year-old Brazilian fighter, boasts a professional record of 33 wins and 8 losses. What sets him apart is his knack for finishing fights, with 28 of his victories coming by way of finish – 19 submissions and 9 knockouts.

Oliveira’s fighting style is marked by aggression and an unparalleled ability to submit opponents from virtually any position. He’s also a formidable striker, capable of delivering knockout blows that can send any fighter in the division to the canvas.

While Oliveira briefly lost the UFC Lightweight Championship in May 2022 due to a weight-cutting mishap during a title fight against Justin Gaethje, he made a triumphant return in February 2023 by defeating Islam Makhachev and regaining the coveted title.

Matchup Breakdown

The forthcoming showdown between Islam Makhachev and Charles Oliveira promises to be an enthralling contest, and both fighters have their unique advantages.

Makhachev’s Grappling Dominance: Makhachev’s biggest edge lies in his grappling expertise. Widely regarded as one of the best grapplers in the UFC, he will undoubtedly aim to take Oliveira to the mat. Once there, Makhachev’s control and submission skills make him an exceptionally tough opponent to overcome.

Oliveira’s Striking Prowess: On the other side of the octagon, Oliveira possesses striking abilities that could prove decisive. With powerful strikes in his arsenal, he has the capability to deliver a knockout blow to any lightweight contender. Oliveira will likely seek to keep the fight standing, believing that this is where he holds the upper hand.

Prediction

Predicting the outcome of this clash is no easy feat, as both fighters are incredibly evenly matched.

However, based on their respective skill sets and previous performance, it’s my belief that Islam Makhachev will emerge victorious. His superior grappling skills are expected to grant him the upper hand, enabling him to control Oliveira on the ground effectively. Once Makhachev establishes this control, it will be an arduous task for Oliveira to mount a submission attempt.

We predict that Makhachev will secure the victory by submission, possibly in the third round.

Conclusion

UFC 294: Islam Makhachev vs Charles Oliveira is undeniably one of the most eagerly anticipated fights of the year. With both fighters at the pinnacle of their careers, the octagon promises to host a battle for the ages.

While I have predicted Islam Makhachev to emerge as the victor, it’s essential to acknowledge that this matchup is set to be intensely competitive. Charles Oliveira is not to be underestimated, and the outcome could swing in his favor. In any case, fight fans can expect an electrifying contest that will be remembered for years to come.

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