Former UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos say that the Islam Makhachev fight at UFC 267 is his last chance to earn a title shot.
Now 36 years old, it has been five years now since dos Anjos lost the UFC lightweight title to Eddie Alvarez. However, after beating Paul Felder in his last fight to cement himself as one of the top-10 lightweights in the world, dos Anjos believes he still has something inside of him to make one more run at the UFC lightweight title, and it all starts with a win over the much-hyped Makhachev at UFC 267 in October.
Speaking to AG Fight, dos Anjos explained why it is do-or-die time for him in his career.
“It’s my last shot. I have to be realistic. It’s not that I’m close to retiring, I’m fine, I train well and I don’t have joint injuries. I have 43 fights and I lost one by KO, I don’t get KO in training, I defend myself well, my chin is good. I still have a long career, but I know that this move here will be another shot for the belt. I’m betting my chips that it will work, and it will. The focus is to be a champion. This fight with Makhachev, because of his ‘hype’, for being a former champion, coming from a victory in the comeback and has everything to be knockout for the belt,” dos Anjos said.
If dos Anjos does end up fighting current UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira for the belt, he is confident he has what it takes to win the fight.
“He is at a very good moment in his career. The cool thing about the career is that it had ups and downs and that’s what makes a champion. Now he’s here, he’s a champion, but looking at the rankings, the guy who could complicate him the most would be me, due to my striking, my skills on the ground, due to my fight rhythm. The focus is on Makhachev and winning well, as I know I’m going to win because this fight doesn’t go to the end. I’m ready to see who the best lightweight Brazilian of all times is,” dos Anjos said.