After securing impressive victories against Bryce Mitchell and Josh Emmett, the undefeated Ilia Topuria has established himself as a force to be reckoned with in the Octagon.
His next challenge awaits in the form of the featherweight champion, Alexander Volkanovski. The two will be competing in the highly anticipated UFC 298 headliner scheduled for February 17 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
In a recent interview with ‘KOlmenero,’ Topuria responded to Yair Rodriguez’s comments. Notably, Conor McGregor has also joined the conversation.
Some could say Topuria modeled himself after McGregor even swaggerjacking his tattoos.
Recently, Topuria threw strong remarks at Volkanovski and threatened the current champion. He confidently asserted that facing the five-time defending champion would be one of the easiest matches of his career.
In reference to McGregor, Topuria expressed admiration. He also stated that he was ready to compete against McGregor in any weight class.
Topuria stated: “Conor McGregor is a superstar, obviously…if he wins again…then fighting him would be good…’At what weight?’…I wouldn’t care…’And the prediction?’…Please, any round.”
McGregor is a former two-division titleholder at featherweight and lightweight and continues to be a PPV king. Even beyond active competition, McGregor remains a significant draw. There are unconfirmed reports of his return at UFC 302 during International Fight Week in June.
Bantamweight Sean O’Malley is set to make his first title defense at UFC 299. He has expressed his aspirations of becoming a two-division champion, targeting Ilia Topuria as the featherweight’s top contender.
O’Malley has boldly claimed that he can defeat Topuria, drawing parallels to Eddie Alvarez vs. Conor McGregor.
Volkanovski has commended O’Malley’s strategic move in choosing Topuria over him. However, Topuria has responded to O’Malley’s aspirations and labeled him a fanboy.
Topuria expressed reluctance to contribute to the alleged superstar’s resume growth at his expense. He said during the interview: “Right now is not in my plans to fight him. He thinks he’s a superstar, he’s not at all. I want to grow up, I don’t want someone at my expense to grow up.”
Topuria is scheduled to compete at UFC 298, while O’Malley’s bout is set for UFC 299 immediately afterwards. Should both emerge victorious, O’Malley has expressed a desire for a showdown against Topuria at the impressive $2.3 Billion Sphere in Las Vegas.