UFC 280 features one of the most anticipated title fights of this year, Charles Oliveira vs Islam Makhachev. The fight for the vacant UFC lightweight title takes place in Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi.
The whole MMA world is in the split while predicting this matchup. On paper, Oliveira should be the favorite to win the title. He has beaten multiple interim world champions during his lightweight journey where as Islam Makhachev does not have a top 5 win in his career.
However, many of the fans are convinced that Islam Makhachev is unbeatable in the lightweight division thanks to his elite Dagestani wrestling. He is expected to fill the space of his friend Khabib Nurmagomedov after his retirement.
Charles Oliveira vs Islam Makhachev stats
|155 lbs||WEIGHT||155 lbs|
Will Islam Makhachev outwrestle Charles Oliveira?
One of the biggest factors in this matchup is going to be Islam Makhachev’s wrestling. Fans are well aware of what Khabib did to his opponents with his wrestling during his lightweight journey. And even though Islam has not been able to be as dominant as Khabib on the ground he has looked incredible in his last few fights.
However, Makhachev struggled to dominate opponents when he faced elite wrestlers or fighters with good jiu-jitsu. Makhachev did not have an easy night against Arman Tsarukyan, who not only stopped many takedown attempts from Islam Makhachev but also took down the Dagestani fighter.
Makhachev also struggled against Thiago Moises until the fourth round where he got a submission. It should also be noted that Moises took down Makhachev and was winning the clinch position on many occasions.
And that’s why it’s safe to believe that Makhachev is not going to outclass Oliveira when it comes to wrestling. Charles Oliveira is better than Tsarukyan and Moises when it comes to wrestling and submission threats.
One mistake from Makhachev during wrestling exchanges can land him in a vicious guillotine of Oliveira. But, Makhachev can be the stronger guy and win the clinch exchanges against Oliveira, achieve more ground control once he gets to the top position and win the fight on the judges’ scorecard.
However, it will be tough to do it for five rounds as Charles Oliveira will be looking to finish Makhachev all the time.
Can Charles Oliveira knockout Islam Makhachev in round 1?
If the fight does end early then it will be Oliveira, who will get a knockout victory as he has been predicting throughout the fight week.
Do Bronx is a much better and complete striker compared to Makhachev? And Oliveira is likely going to put pressure on Makhachev early and hurt him badly in the first round.
Islam Makhachev might even get desperate for a takedown and get caught in a submission. Oliveira has the power to shut the lights out on Islam Makhachev, who has been knocked out before.
So it’s safe to say that the chances of Oliveria winning by knockout are way more than him submitting Makhachev.
Oliveira vs Makhachev prediction
Even if this is a tricky fight to predict Charles Oliveira has to be the most logical pick for this title fight. Islam Makhachev might just be the best lightweight o the planet and will destroy Oliveira as Khabib has predicted.
However, looking at Makhachev’s performances against elite wrestlers and jiu-jitsu fighters it’s safe to say that Oliveira will be the toughest fight Makhachev. And with the momentum of Oliveira and his confidence, he will be able to get the finish at UFC 280