No one was happier to see a new No.1 contender crowned in the featherweight division than defending champion Alexander Volkanovski.
On Saturday night, Brian Ortega slipped into that position after an unbalanced victory over “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung in the main event of UFC Fight Island 6.
Volkanovski had been eagerly awaiting another competition after winning the title with a unanimous decision over Max Holloway in 2019, then turned to defend the belt in an immediate rematch seven months later. The second time around, Volkanovski made a split decision, but he ended up with two wins over Holloway.
Sadly, there was still no clear title challenger awaiting him and Volkanovski must have heard screams about a potential trilogy with Holloway. After Ortega’s victory over Jung, it looks like Volkanovski finally has a new opponent waiting for him and he celebrated that fact moments after the main event ended.
“Finally, we have a leadership in this division,” Volkanovski wrote on Twitter of Ortega’s victory over Jung. “Go inside and take the first place. That’s all I wanted !! “
Finally, we have a leadership in this division, get in there and take the top spot… that’s all I wanted! # ufcfightisland6
– Alex Volkanovski (@alexvolkanovski) October 18, 2020
Volkanovski had previously lamented calls for Holloway for a third shot after beating Holloway twice.
While the rematch with the Hawaiians was actually closer than the first fight, Volkanovsky still got the victory and he just didn’t see the need to take it back with Holloway.
“The division has to play, and we have an entire division, there are so many of us,” Volkanovski said in July. “We have 15 people who are ranked for a reason, and what, we’re going to keep fighting until Max wins?” You know what I mean? It just doesn’t make sense.
UFC President Dana White said ahead of Saturday night that main event winner Ortega vs Jung would earn a title shot. Now it looks like Ortega has solidified himself as the next person in line and Volkanovski looks up to the challenge.