Ilia Topuria has the featherweight championship belt between his eyes and he won’t stop until he gets it. The matador will be in the front row watch the stellar fight of UFC 290 at dawn from Saturday to Sunday in Las Vegas, which will face Alexander Volkanovski, champion of the division, and Yair Rodríguez, interim champion, in the unification of the category. The winner could be the next rival of the Hispano-Georgian, since both have shown interest in a possible clash with him.
The matador He warned that he wants to be a UFC champion and he has shown it every time he has gone up to the cage. He did it again last month by beating Josh Emmett by a resounding unanimous decision in his first main event fight, where he taught a boxing class and showed obvious superiority. This triumph helped him climb to fifth place in the featherweight ranking and to reaffirm that he deserves to be among the best. “No one can match the level I have in the cage. I do it every time I come in and I have demonstrated it tonight. I am the next man, without any doubt. I deserve it, I’m number one to get that title”, assured Topuria after the important victory.
At dawn from Saturday to Sunday, the T-Mobile Arena in Paradise in Las Vegas will host the UFC 290, which will feature big names from the company. There will be two titles at stake. In the co-main event, the Mexican Brandon Moreno will defend his flyweight belt against the Brazilian Alexander Pantoja. But the main course will come later. Alexander Volkanovski, featherweight champion and number two in the pound-for-pound ranking (below only Jon Jones), and yair rodriguezinterim champion, will unify the division.
Ilia Topuria doesn’t want to miss out on this great clash, as his next opponent could come from there. The Hispano-Georgian has challenged the Australian on several occasions for his belt. He himself assured that a great victory against Emmett “would put him in the conversation.” He has already hyped the fight on several occasions, and in the press conference prior to his next clash he has talked about him again. “I wasn’t that impressed with him. I’m glad you all were impressed because that gives him publicity for a fight in the future. If Ilia wants smoke, he’s going to be good, because I know he’s going to talk a lot of trash and that’s fun. Punching people who talk trash in the face is much better”, declared Volkanovski when asked about The matador. A fight that seems to be getting closer and the emotion (and tension) is already felt in the environment.
Yair Rodríguez also believes that he will cross paths with Topuria at some point or another. “Being part of the same division, there will indisputably be a point at which we will face each other. I don’t have favoritism to face one fighter or another, but I think it’s a matter of time, while our paths cross”, the Mexican told AS. The interim champion was indeed impressed with the performance of the Hispano-Georgian in Jacksonville. “I think it was excellent work, very clever. He didn’t risk too much because he also respected Josh Emmett and the power that he has. Ilia has great power to control her opponent, and her boxing is very beautiful, impeccable. He did a quality job,” he said. Another big name from the company that has flattered the Bullfighter has been Kamaru Usman, former welterweight champion. The Nigerian trained with Topuria before his feud with Emmett, and has placed him in his Top 5 most exciting fighters to watch, along with fighters like Justin Gaethje, Dustin Poirier or Israel Adesanya. Ilia is already among the best, and the belt is getting closer.