The fellow Dagestani fighter was scheduled to take on Rafael dos Anjos in his lightweight return at UFC 254. However, dos Anjos pulled out of the fight after he tested positive for coronavirus.
In a series of call-outs, Islam Makhachev offered to fight against several fighters. However, there has been no official replacement and it looks like Makhachev may not be competing at UFC 254. Makhachev's teammate and UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov took to Twitter and highlighted the similar situation he had to go through early in his career. Nurmagomedov often had trouble landing a fight during his initial years in the UFC. He currently reigns as the lightweight champion of the world and believes Islam Makhachev will soon follow.
Earlier, Islam Makhachev called out former two-time Bellator lightweight champion Michael Chandler and offered the possibility of welcoming the new UFC signing.
Makhachev also hinted at the possibility of taking on rising prospect and submission specialist Charles Oliveira. Additionally, he called out former lightweight title contender and UFC veteran Donald Cerrone for a scrap at the welterweight division.
He also got into a brief back and forth with Dan Hooker. Makachev called Hooker a "bullsh*t guy" as he called out the top-ranked lightweight. Hooker was quick to reply and it certainly did not go well with the Russian fighter.
Earlier, Islam Makhachev had put out a post on Instagram announcing Rafael dos Anjos' withdrawal. He also stated that he is looking for a new opponent.
Islam Makhachev may not compete at UFC 254
After suffering back to back losses at the welterweight division, the former lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos was set to compete at the 155-pound division for the first time since 2016.
Rafael dos Anjos' withdrawal couldn't have come at a worse time for Islam Makhachev who has been out of action since his unanimous decision win over Davi Ramos back at UFC 242. However, Makhachev's decision to call-out top-ranked fighters indicates that he would be taking on bigger names going forward.Published 10 Oct 2020, 20:47 IST