Ilia Topuria Eyes Historic Bout: “A Worthy Champion”

"Aiming for History, Ready for Anyone" - Topuria

Newly crowned featherweight king Ilia Topuria is brimming with confidence. With an undefeated record of 15-0 and the UFC belt now in his possession, he’s setting his sights on global domination. Since clinching the title at UFC 298, Topuria has thrown down the gauntlet to bantamweight champion Sean O’Malley and lightweight champion Islam Makhachev, hinting at several exciting confrontations ahead. However, Topuria also expressed a tinge of disappointment over missing out on the opportunity to challenge the legendary Khabib Nurmagomedov.



According to “El Matador,” facing Khabib, an undefeated superstar who reigned supreme in the lightweight division for years, has always been his ultimate dream. Yet, with Khabib’s retirement in 2020 following his win against Justin Gaethje, that dream match will remain just that—a dream. Instead, Topuria eyes a potential showdown with Khabib’s successor, Islam Makhachev.

“I would love to step into the octagon against Khabib Nurmagomedov,” said Ilia Topuria in a recent interview. “He had an unbeaten record of 29-0, making it an attractive record for me, and facing him would have been historic. He is a worthy and honorable champion in my eyes. I’m 100% confident I would defeat him.”


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Before venturing into different weight classes, Topuria has more to prove in the featherweight division. He’s not interested in defending his title against the division’s older generation but is open to bouts against former champion Max Holloway, top contender Brian Ortega, and the undefeated Movsar Evloev, who recently defeated Arnold Allen to maintain an 18-0 record.

“I would love to step into the octagon against Khabib Nurmagomedov…He is a worthy and honorable champion in my eyes. I’m 100% confident I would defeat him.” – Ilia Topuria

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