Unforeseen Announcement: UFC 298 Main Fights Revealed
By [Journalist Name]
Published on [Publication Date]
Ilia Topuria’s Unique Message for Alexander Volkanovski
Unpredictably, Dana White, the president of UFC, has officially announced the main fights for the first three UFC Pay-Per-View events of 2024. However, this announcement was far from impromptu. It was a meticulously orchestrated plan. The Spanish audience’s attention was immediately captured by Ilia Topuria, who wasted no time in responding to the news. In a pre-recorded video, Topuria, known as “The Matador,” is seen preparing a rose and placing it in a box. Alongside the video, she posted the caption “The fifteenth rose,” alluding to her impressive 14-0 record and sending a clear message to her upcoming opponent.
Clues Revealed: Date and Location of the Fight
In her brief social media post, Ilia Topuria not only hinted at her opponent but also disclosed information that had not been previously revealed. While Dana White mentioned “February 2024” during the announcement, he did not specify the exact date or location. However, Topuria confidently affirms that the highly anticipated duel will take place in Los Angeles. Although we await official confirmation, one thing is certain: Topuria will have waited seven long months from winning the opportunity until she can finally compete for it.
Topuria’s Remarkable Journey to the Title
Ilia Topuria burst onto the UFC scene like a force of nature. With just three fights, she quickly climbed the ranks, securing a spot among the top 15 in her division. Two more victories propelled her into the top 10 of the featherweight division. It was evident that Topuria had her sights set on the title, and she was willing to face any challenge to achieve her goal. Despite a wait from December 2022 to June 2023 for a significant opportunity, Topuria remained determined. On June 24, she delivered a spectacular performance against Josh Emmett, solidifying her position as a rising star in the division. With her victory, Topuria boldly declared, “Either the title or UFC Spain.”
The Path to Victory: Clearing the Division’s Obstacles
Ilia Topuria’s conviction was grounded in logic. Although her win against Emmett placed her at number five in the division, the rankings were deceiving. Yair Rodríguez held the top spot as the interim champion, but a scheduled fight against the reigning champion made a fourth encounter unlikely. Max Holloway, ranked second, had already lost three times to Volkanovski. Brian Ortega, ranked third, had not fought since July 2022 and had recently suffered a defeat against Yair. Lastly, Arnold Allen, ranked fourth, had also lost his last fight against Holloway. The path to the title was clear for Topuria.
Volkanovski’s Setback and Topuria’s Patient Wait
At UFC 290, Alexander Volkanovski surpassed Yair Rodríguez, securing his position as the top contender. However, Volkanovski’s plans took an unexpected turn when he announced the need for elbow surgery. Despite his setback, the UFC named Charles Oliveira as the contender for the interim belt, ensuring that the rematch would have to wait. Volkanovski’s recovery progressed well, and he expressed his desire to face Topuria in the final Pay-Per-View event of the year, scheduled for December 16. However, circumstances led to a change of plans, and both fighters had to exercise patience.
A Definitive Date: January 20, 2024
After considering the intentions of both parties, January 20, 2024, was set as the definitive date for the highly anticipated showdown. Ilia Topuria even expressed her confidence in the fight during an interview, but fate had other plans. Charles Oliveira withdrew from his fight against Makhachev, and Volkanovski received the call from the UFC. Despite having only 11 days’ notice, Volkanovski bravely accepted the challenge and saved the event. However, his defeat in the first round against Makhachev and the subsequent cuts he sustained raised concerns about his eligibility to compete. The UFC required Volkanovski to obtain medical clearance, resulting in a one-month delay. This delay, however, worked in favor of both fighters, as Topuria would now compete for an interim position or extend her wait, while Volkanovski could remain active.
A “Big Announcement” and a Meeting in Spain
Recent reports in the United States have sparked speculation about a potential change in the fight. Dana White had teased a “big announcement” during his time in Abu Dhabi, and on November 6, he finally delivered. Although the exact timing of the agreement remains unknown, it is worth noting that Ilia Topuria had a meeting with Hunter Campbell, Dana White’s right-hand man, in Spain just days before the announcement. This is not the first time Topuria has had such a meeting with UFC officials. In 2022, after a weight-cutting issue, Dana White personally intervened to find a solution. It is evident that the UFC recognizes Topuria’s immense potential, and at UFC 298, she will have her long-awaited opportunity to shine. The fifteenth rose awaits her on D-day.
At the age of 13, [Journalist Name] held a microphone in his hands, and by 15, he was already commentating on matches of his beloved Ponferradina on a local radio station. He pursued a journalism degree at the prestigious Complutense University in Madrid, where he realized his true passion lay in covering contact sports rather than football. In 2016, he joined Diario AS, establishing himself as a prominent national journalist specializing in boxing, MMA, and wrestling. He currently serves as a boxing commentator on DAZN and hosts a weekly podcast called ‘KO a la Carrera,’ where he provides insightful analysis on the latest sports news.