UFC lightweight Islam Makhachev was a bit too honest recently when asked about his next opponent Charles Oliveira. Makhachev is one of those cases that prove why you need a manager that’s actually working in your best interest.
In an era where many UFC stars are forgoing managers due to high fees – it’s very important to stress the importance of the role.
While Makhachev certainly isn’t getting some massive payday for UFC 281 it’s a sheer miracle that he’s gotten a title shot without going up against any of the heavy hitters in the division. Makhachev’s sole ranked victory remains against a battered Dan Hooker on short notice.
To make matters worse – Charles Oliveira is repped by a former UFC athlete and current coach Diego Lima. If Lima was actually a good manager he’d be able to prevent his champion getting stripped over what plenty of insiders confirmed was a faulty scale. Not to mention he wouldn’t have been forced to agree to this Abu Dhabi match up which both him and the manager claim is biased in Makhachev’s favor – which Nurmagomedov even acknowledged.
After some push back UFC announced that Oliveira will face Islam Makhachev for the vacant lightweight belt at UFC 280 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
This matchup had a lot of back and forth from Oliveira’s camp. They believe that giving Makhachev a title shot is a ridiculous thing to do since the Dagestani has only faced 1 top ranked opponent. They also refused to compete in UAE, an Islamic country which will likely favor Makhachev. And in reality it’s not even about Islam as much as it’s about the fact that their teammate was unfavorably judged there.
During a recent talk in DC & RC, Islam Makhachev was asked to explain what happened between their respective camps when discussing the matchup. The 30-year-old seemed pretty annoyed by the number of excuses given by Oliveira.
“For me, this is embarrassing when the UFC lightweight champion asks someone like Nate Diaz or Conor McGregor, who won like five years ago, nobody remembers when those guys won [a] fight. He tried to call Diaz, McGregor, but he forgot my name. ”
“And when they ask about me, they say he needs money or something like this. But when he fights with Dustin or Justin Gaethje, he doesn’t think about money. Now, when they say he has to fight vs. Islam, he always say, ‘I want to fight in Brazil, I want to fight end of this year,’ or, ‘I need some money.” Makhachev said.
Makhachev was asked to clarify if Oliveira questioned his credibility to fight for the belt. Makhachev also revealed that the UFC had enough and was ready to give the opportunity to someone else.
“Of course. He say, ‘Islam have to fight one more time’ or something like this. But the UFC told him, ‘Hey, if you (don’t) take this fight, we’re gonna give the same chance to Michael Chandler. That’s why he (took) this fight.” Makhachev said.
Michael Chandler was 2-2 under the UFC banner and just had a title shot in May of last year. His recent fight was against UFC veteran Tony Ferguson at UFC 274 where Oliveira defeated Justin Gaethje.