Not even 48 hours removed from his latest UFC win, Islam Makhachev already is thinking of getting back into the octagon this week.

The UFC lightweight contender suggested to step in on short notice and replace Rafael Fiziev in a bout against former UFC champion Rafael dos Anjos on Saturday at UFC 272 in Las Vegas.

Fiziev was forced to withdraw from the bout Monday afternoon after he tested positive for COVID-19 and was experiencing symptoms. The UFC is currently seeking a replacement for dos Anjos.

Makhachev (22-1 MMA, 11-1 UFC), who defeated Bobby Green this past weekend with a first-round TKO in the main event of UFC Fight Night 202, is down to fight dos Anjos at welterweight.

“170??? Let’s do it,” Makhachev wrote on Twitter. “We have unfinished business RDA.”

170 ??? Let’s do it. We have unfinished business RDA @ufc @espnmma @bokamotoESPN @MMAjunkieJohn

— Makhachev Islam (@MAKHACHEVMMA) February 28, 2022

Dos Anjos countered Makhachev’s callout with a suggestion that they fight at 165 pounds, which Makhachev took exception to.

You looking for the way out again?

— Makhachev Islam (@MAKHACHEVMMA) February 28, 2022

Both Makhachev and dos Anjos have been scheduled to fight three times in the past – twice in 2020 and once in 2021.

The first time, dos Anjos tested positive for COVID-19, which canceled their UFC 254 meeting. The second cancellation came after Makhachev sustained an injury, which prompted Paul Felder to step in on days’ notice to headline a UFC Fight Night event. And the third was last October for UFC 267, but dos Anjos pulled out citing an injury.

Makhachev is on a 10-fight winning streak. The Khabib Nurmagomedov protege hasn’t lost since getting knocked out by Adriano Martins at UFC 192 in 2015.

Other UFC fighters have raised their hands at the opportunity to fight dos Anjos on Saturday. You can see those callouts below.


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