UFC 298 – Alexander Volkanovski vs. Ilia Topuria: Fight Card, Date, Odds, Rumors, Location, Complete Guide

UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski will defend his championship against Ilia Topuria at UFC 298, which will take place on February 17 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. This confirmation comes directly from CEO Dana White.

The highly anticipated 145-pound title fight had previously been scheduled for February, but it now has a confirmed date and venue.

Volkanovski (26-3) returns to the octagon after losing a first-round knockout to Islam Makhachev in October in an attempt to move up to the lightweight category. This battle was called on short notice because the original challenger, Charles Oliveira, suffered a face cut.

Volkanovski, from Sydney, Australia, is widely considered one of the world’s best fighters. Notably, his only two defeats have come in the 155-pound weight class, both against Makhachev.

His opponent, Spain’s Topuria (14-0), earned a title opportunity after defeating Josh Emmett in five rounds earlier this year.

The forthcoming event will be UFC’s return to Anaheim, its first since January 2022.

Fight Card and Odds

  • Alexander Volkanovski (-150) vs. Ilia Topuria (+125) – Featherweight Championship
  • Robert Whittaker (-210) vs. Paulo Costa (+175) – Middleweights
  • Ian Machado Garry (-225) vs. Geoff Neal (+185) – Welterweights
  • Merab Dvalishvili (-175) vs. Henry Cejudo (+140) – Bantamweights
  • Anthony Hernandez (Opponent TBD) – Middleweights
  • Amanda Lemos vs. Mackenzie Dern – Women’s Strawweights
  • Marcos Rogerio de Lima vs. Justin Tafa – Heavyweights
  • Zhang Mingyang vs. Brendson Ribiero – Light Heavyweights
  • Yusaku Kinoshita vs. Danny Barlow – Welterweights
  • Miranda Maverick vs. Andrea Lee – Women’s Flyweights

UFC 298 Information

  • Date: February 17
  • Location: Honda Center, Anaheim
  • Start Time: 10 p.m. ET (Main Card)
  • How to Watch: ESPN+ Pay-Per-View

UFC 298: Alexander Volkanovski vs. Ilia Topuria: Unbeaten Fighter Mocks ‘El Matador’ With Iconic Mike Tyson Phrase

Leading up to the fight, the usual psychological warfare begins, with ‘El Matador’ taking to social media to predict a merciless victory against the incumbent titleholder.

In response, Movsar Evloev, also unbeaten in the featherweight division, responds sharply, mimicking a legendary Mike Tyson quip.

During a recent MMA Hour interview with Ariel Helwani, Topuria announced his intention to convert the champion into a punching bag.

However, Evloev, who had just defeated Arnold Allen at UFC 297, was critical of his statement. Using Tyson’s memorable line, Evloev hints that Topuria’s plan may falter when confronted with the realities of combat.

The context for Evloev’s remark stems from Tyson’s legendary response to an inquiry concerning Evander Holyfield’s fight plan.

Evloev now uses this statement to question Topuria’s confident claims of easily dismissing Volkanovski, who has an undefeated record in the featherweight division.

Despite the tough job ahead against the formidable Volkanovski, Topuria exudes confidence, portraying the match as a simple victory.

In a bold move, he modifies his Instagram bio to reflect his status as a UFC champion, predicting the outcome of the upcoming fight.

While Volkanovski’s dominance in the featherweight class is evident, Topuria’s brazen confidence shows a belief that goes beyond conventional wisdom.

By claiming the championship title on social media, he echoes the ambitions of previous contenders like Max Holloway, albeit with an air of swagger that raises concerns.

However, if Topuria fulfills his pre-fight prophecy, it might transform the division’s environment, ushering in a new era of featherweight dominance.