Islam Makhachev wants his title shot after laying waste to another opponent in the UFC Vegas 49 main event.
The Dagestani powerhouse needed less than one round to finish Bobby Green after planting him on the canvas with a takedown and never allowing the veteran fighter to get back up again. As soon as Makhachev got on top, he began raining down blows in succession that had Green trapped without any room to escape.
Following a number of unanswered shots with Green only able to cover up to defend himself, referee Herb Dean saw enough to stop the contest with the end coming at just 3:23 in the opening round.
“I feel good,” Makhachev said following his 10th consecutive win in a row. “I’m very happy. I’m training so hard for this fight. I was waiting for Beneil [Dariush], I think he’ll fix his [injury] very soon and we can meet again.”
While Makhachev was a massive favorite going into the fight after Beneil Dariush was forced out of the main event with an injury and replaced by Green on just two weeks’ notice, it was still a risk with a potential title shot hanging in the balance.
Regardless of the stakes, Makhachev looked every bit a future champion with his performance as he dominated Green from the first second of the fight until the very last.
It didn’t take long for 30-year-old former Sambo champion to close the distance, push Green against the cage and then drop down to grab onto the legs to bring the fight crashing to the canvas. Once he was on top, Makhachev was a suffocating force as usual while pressing his full weight down on Green and looking to shred his opponent’s defense.
It was only a matter of seconds before Makhachev advanced his position into the mount and from there, Green was living on borrowed time.
Makhachev was relentless with his ground and pound as he just blasted away with lefts and rights from the top while Green could only try to twist and turn to avoid taking any more damage. It was a valiant effort from Green but he was stuck with no way to break free with Makhachev just hammering away at him with shots from above.
When it was clear that Green was just covering his head with little resistance otherwise, the referee had no choice but to stop the contest with Makhachev immediately celebrating his latest win.
Green was understandably upset with the loss but he also gave credit to Makhachev for a job well done.
“I’m really disappointed,” Green said. “But this is what happens when you try to throw something together so fast. At least he got the finish, he did exactly what he said he was going to do.”
Heading into Saturday night, Makhachev was already being declared the de facto No. 1 contender in the lightweight division but he cemented his place with another lopsided win in the UFC Vegas 49 main event.
Now it appears he’ll await the upcoming title fight between reigning champion Charles Oliveira and Justin Gaethje at UFC 274 in May to see who will be next on his hit list.
“I just want a title fight,” Makhachev said. “I’m tired about all these things. I need a title fight. I am ready, I am here. Just tell me when and where, that’s it.”