UFC 284 saw one of the best main events in the company’s history. Islam Makhachev and Alexander Volkanovski put up an all-time classic in the lightweight title bout. Ahead of the bout, Volkanovksi revealed that Islam was taking him lightly. Hence, he promised to change Makhachev’s mind inside the Octagon. While he fell short of the win, Volkanovski showed why he is one of the best P4P fighters in the UFC.
From the very first round onward, Alex fought as if he had a chip on his shoulder. He faced a lot of belittlement due to his small frame ahead of the bout. Fans ruled him out completely and declared Makhachev the undeniable favorite. However, the 34-year-old proved the critics wrong in the very first round itself. He clipped Islam early on and it made the Dagestani go into survival mode.
The full #UFC284 main event scorecards 📝 pic.twitter.com/zCx1YmqcFb— UFC (@ufc) February 12, 2023
From there onwards, Islam realized his dream to knock out Volkanovski was going to be a hard one to achieve. Hence, he opted to rely on his unmatched wrestling skills. But to the surprise of many, Makhachev’s grappling did not keep Volk on the ground for too long. Every time Islam had a takedown, Alex either managed to get back on his feet or survive the submission attempts from Islam swiftly.
#UFC284 Official Scorecards: Islam Makhachev (@MAKHACHEVMMA) vs Alexander Volkanovski— UFC News (@UFCNews) February 12, 2023
See every judges' scorecard from #UFC284 here ➡️: https://t.co/enKup6T3NK pic.twitter.com/5DJgiyxJdU
While Islam also landed some thumping shots on the feet, It was Volkanovski who did better. He scored the only knockdown of the fight in the final round. Although the Aussie ended the fight on top, he lost the bout via unanimous decision. The judges scored the fight 48-47, 48-47, and 49-46 for Islam Makhachev. Was it the right call? Let’s find out!
Was Alexander Volkanovski robbed against Islam Makhachev at UFC 284?
Alexander Volkanovski gave Islam Makhachev the toughest fight of his career thus far. Except for one knockout loss to his name, no fighter has been able to push Makhachev to his limit. The image of Volkanovski standing on top of him, landing vicious ground and pound, will no doubt stay with the fans for a long time to come. Unfortunately for him, the judges favored Makhachev’s wrestling more than his striking.
We just witnessed an ALL TIMER 🙌 #UFC284 pic.twitter.com/Abd1D0T24S— UFC (@ufc) February 12, 2023
As per UFC stats, Volk nearly landed twice the strikes that Makhachev did. He managed to land 70 significant strikes and 164 strikes in total. At the same time, Makhachev only managed 95 total strikes and 57 significant strikes. In round 1, Islam and Alex landed 10 and 11 significant strikes respectively. But both landed 19 significant strikes each in round 2.
But in rounds 3, 4, and 5 Alex landed 14, 6, and 20 strikes respectively. In the same rounds, the champ landed 16, 4, and 8 significant strikes respectively. It proves that Volk slowly took over the fight as it went on. However, Islam managed to secure 4 takedowns in the fight, out of 9 takedown attempts. In total, Makhachev had a ground control time of 7:37 minutes, whereas Volkanovski only controlled the bout for 2:55 minutes.
THE NEW P4P #1 IN THE WORLD!! 🏆@MakhachevMMA has defeated Alex Volkanovski by unanimous decision! #UFC284 pic.twitter.com/zpqyy7HKZ6— UFC (@ufc) February 12, 2023
In terms of damage, both fighters were left with battle scars at the end of the bout. But, it was Alex who had a knockdown to show for it. So one can imagine the frustrations among some fans about the judges’ decision. However, they have to take Islam’s grappling superiority into consideration as well. Although the result will not please everybody, it is certainly not a robbery.