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 Islam Makhachev of Russia celebrates after his victory over Charles Oliveira of Brazil in their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 280 event at Etihad Arena on October 22, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
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Islam Makhachev’s Career Highlights | Title Wins To Best Finishes

Learn More About Islam Makhachev’s Career Highlights As The Lightweight Champion And One Of The Most Dominant Fighters In The UFC

Learn more about Islam Makhachev, his career highlights, which range from becoming the UFC lightweight champion to owning one of the longest winning streaks in UFC history. We’ll cover his incredible performances and discuss the statistics behind Makhachev’s amazing UFC career thus far.

Islam Makhachev of Russia prepares to fight Alexander Volkanovski of Australia in the UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 284 event at RAC Arena on February 12, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev of Russia prepares to fight Alexander Volkanovski of Australia in the UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 284 event at RAC Arena on February 12, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

  • Makhachev has been a professional fighter since 2010.
     
  • Makhachev made his Octagon debut against Leo Kuntz on UFC 187 on October 3, 2015, and won by rear naked choke submission in the second round.
     
  • Makhachev has 14 UFC fights, and he’s on a 12-fight winning streak. That winning streak is tied for the second longest winning streak in division history with Charles Oliveira. Another win would put him into a three-way tie for the longest win streak in lightweight history with Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov.
     
  • In 2022, Oliveira won the undisputed UFC lightweight championship by submitting Charles Oliveira at UFC 280. With the victory, Makhachev became the 12th undisputed UFC lightweight champion in UFC history.
     
  • Makhachev’s professional record is 24-1. Four of his wins have come by KO, 11 by submission (2 triangle, 3 rear naked choke, 3 armbar, 2 triangle armbar, kimura).
     
  • Makhachev’s 6 submission wins are tied for the fifth most in UFC lightweight history.
     
  • Makhachev is currently ranked as the No. 3 Men’s pound-for-pound fighter on the planet.

Top Submissions In Islam Makhachev’s Career

Islam Makhachev of Russia submits Charles Oliveira of Brazil in their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 280 event at Etihad Arena on October 22, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by John Barry/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev of Russia submits Charles Oliveira of Brazil in their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 280 event at Etihad Arena on October 22, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by John Barry/Zuffa LLC)

Makhachev has won 6 UFC fights by submission. Those victories have come in a variety of ways, which show just how truly special he is once the fight hits the canvas. Those victories came against Leo Kuntz, Kajan Johnson, Drew Dober, Thiago Moises, Dan Hooker, and Charles Oliveira.

Defeating submission king Charles Oliveira by submission to win the undisputed lightweight title was particularly special.

5 Standout Fights From Islam Makhachev’s Career

UFC 220 – Islam Makhachev vs Gleison Tibau

Islam Makhachev of Russia celebrates his TKO over Gleison Tibau of Brazil in their lightweight bout during the UFC 220 event at TD Garden on January 20, 2018 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Brandon Magnus/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev of Russia celebrates his TKO over Gleison Tibau of Brazil in their lightweight bout during the UFC 220 event at TD Garden on January 20, 2018 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Brandon Magnus/Zuffa LLC)

Islam Makhachev’s first knockout victory inside the Octagon was a devastating one.

Makhachev connected with a strike less than a minute into the fight that shut the lights out on veteran Gleison Tibau. It was proof that Makhachev had more to his game than incredible grappling and top-level submission skills.

UFC 259 – Islam Makhachev vs Drew Dober

Islam Makhachev works for a submission against Drew Dober in their lightweight fight during the UFC 259 event at UFC APEX on March 06, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev works for a submission against Drew Dober in their lightweight fight during the UFC 259 event at UFC APEX on March 06, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Many believed that Islam Makhachev’s first true test in the realm of the lightweight elite came at UFC 259 when he faced Drew Dober.

Dober, who currently holds the record for the most knockout wins in UFC lightweight history, is no walk in the park, but Makhachev was dominant for as long as their bout lasted. Makhachev was able to get the arm-triangle choke in the third round and cement his place in the division’s top 15.

UFC 267 – Islam Makhachev vs Dan Hooker

Islam Makhachev of Russia secures an arm lock submission against Dan Hooker of New Zealand in a lightweight fight during the UFC 267 event at Etihad Arena on October 30, 2021 in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev of Russia secures an arm lock submission against Dan Hooker of New Zealand in a lightweight fight during the UFC 267 event at Etihad Arena on October 30, 2021 in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Islam Makhachev was already a star before his UFC 267 bout with Dan Hooker in Abu Dhabi, but his kimura victory over New Zealand’s Hooker elevated him to new heights.

To have such a dominant performance with such a quick finish sent a real message to the true contenders at lightweight that Makhachev was on a runaway path to the title.

UFC 280 – Islam Makhachev vs Charles Oliveira

 Islam Makhachev of Russia celebrates after his victory over Charles Oliveira of Brazil in their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 280 event at Etihad Arena on October 22, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev of Russia celebrates after his victory over Charles Oliveira of Brazil in their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 280 event at Etihad Arena October 22, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa)

Islam Makhachev vs Charles Oliveira was the perfect fight. It had everything – intrigue, unpredictability and, most importantly, it featured the top two lightweights on the planet.

Makhachev put together his whole game, dropping Oliveira on the feet and going to the ground and submitting the UFC record holder for submission wins to win the undisputed UFC lightweight championship. It was a perfect showing for Makhachev – and just like that – the run to the top was complete.

UFC 284 – Islam Makhachev vs Alexander Volkanovski

Islam Makhachev of Russia and Alexander Volkanovski of Australia touch gloves to start their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 284 event at RAC Arena on February 12, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev of Russia and Alexander Volkanovski of Australia touch gloves to start their UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 284 event at RAC Arena on February 12, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Right after beating Charles Oliveira in Abu Dhabi, featherweight champion and No. 2 pound-for-pound fighter Alexander Volkanovski hopped into the Octagon to challenge Makhachev.

Makhachev obliged Volkanovski’s challenge and went to Perth, Australia for his first title defense. In what turned out to be a Fight of the Year contender, Makhachev and Volkanovski went back-and-forth for 25 minutes in an epic bout. The judges gave Makhachev the unanimous decision nod and it cemented Makhachev’s place in the UFC as one of – if not the best - fighters in the UFC.

Islam Makhachev’s Athlete Record

Islam Makhachev's Win Streak
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Islam Makhachev's Win Streak
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  • UFC 284 [2/11/23] Makhachev won a five round unanimous decision over Alexander Volkanovski to retain his lightweight title
     
  • UFC 280 [10/22/22] Makhachev submitted Charles Oliveira via arm triangle choke to win the vacant UFC lightweight championship
     
  • UFC Fight Night [2/26/22] Makhachev stopped Bobby Green via strikes at 3:23 of the first round
     
  • UFC 267 [10/30/21] Makhachev submitted Dan Hooker via kumura at 2:25 of the first round
     
  • UFC on ESPN [7/17/21] Makhachev submitted Thiago Moises via rear naked choke at 2:38 in the fourth round
     
  • UFC 259 [ 3/6/21] Makhachev submitted Drew Dober via arm triangle choke at 1:37 of the third round
     
  • UFC 242 [9/7/19] Makhachev won a three round unanimous decision over Davi Ramos
     
  • UFC Fight Night [4/20/19] Makhachev won a three round unanimous decision over Arman Tsarukyan
     
  • UFC on FOX [7/28/18] Makhachev submitted Kajan Johnson via armbar at 4:43 of the first round
     
  • UFC 220 [1/20/18] Makhachev knocked out Gleison Tibau at :57 of the first round
     
  • UFC 208 [2/11/17] Makhachev won a three round unanimous decision over Nik Lentz
     
  • UFC Fight Night [9/17/16] Makhachev won a three round decision over Chris Wade
     
  • UFC 192 [10/3/15] Makhachev was knocked out Adriano Martins at 1:46 of the first round
     
  • UFC 187 [5/23/15] Makhachev Leo Kuntz via rear naked choke at 2:38 of the second round

Islam Makhachev Rapid Q & A

Islam Makhachev of Russia reacts after his victory over Alexander Volkanovski of Australia in the UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 284 event at RAC Arena on February 12, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev of Russia reacts after his victory over Alexander Volkanovski of Australia in the UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 284 event at RAC Arena on February 12, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

  • What is Islam Makhachev’s UFC record?
    • 24-1
       
  • What is Islam Makhachev’s age?
    • 31 years old
       
  • How tall is Islam Makhachev?
    • 5’10”
       
  • What is Islam Makhachev’s reach?
    • 70.5”
       
  • Where is Islam Makhachev from?
    • Dagestan, Russia
       
  • What weight division is Islam Makhachev in?
    • Islam Makhachev is currently the champion of the lightweight division
       
  • How many successful lightweight title defenses does Islam Makhachev have?
    • One

What Fighting Style Does Islam Makhachev Use?

Islam Makhachev of Russia prepares to fight Alexander Volkanovski of Australia in the UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 284 event at RAC Arena on February 12, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
Islam Makhachev of Russia prepares to fight Alexander Volkanovski of Australia in the UFC lightweight championship fight during the UFC 284 event at RAC Arena on February 12, 2023 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

One of the reasons that Islam Makhachev has had so much success over the years is that he’s one of the most dominant wrestlers in the UFC. He combines his grappling prowess with his submission skills and his ever developing striking and it’s helped him become one of the most complete fighters in the world.

How Many UFC Fights Does Islam Makhachev Have?

Islam Makhachev has 25 career UFC fights.

When Is Islam Makhachev’s Next Fight?

Islam Makhachev’s next fight will come at UFC 294 for the undisputed lightweight title against UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski. It’s a rematch with the man he defeated earlier this year at UFC 284. Makhachev vs Volkanovski 1 was one of the best fights of 2023 and when Makhachev's original opponent, Charles Oliveira was forced to pull out of the fight with an injury, Volkanovski answered the call. The fight will take place in Abu Dhabi on October 21, 2023.

Order UFC 294: Makhachev vs Oliveira 2

UFC 294: Makhachev vs Volkanovski 2 took place live from Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, UAE on October 21, 2023. See the Final Results, Official Scorecards and Who Won Bonuses - and relive the action on UFC Fight Pass!