The upcoming UFC 298 is set to feature an intense battle for the featherweight title between current champion Alex Volkanovski and challenger Ilia Topuria. This highly anticipated match-up promises to be the highlight of the entire event, which also includes one other super-battle, only in the middleweight division between the former champ, Robert Whittaker, and Paulo Costa. 

Volk’s Legacy at Stake Against Topuria

Volkanovski has an impressive track record in his career, boasting 26 wins and only three losses. But the last two to Islam Makhachev have shaken his legacy, despite all the circumstances. Many forget that in the first clash, Volk was beginning to flip the situation in the last round, while the previous loss came with the Aussia accepting the bout on short notice without being prepared properly. To truly understand Volk’s power, one must look at his resume and initial encounter with Islam.

Still, despite all these losses, Alex the Great seems untouchable in the featherweight division. Just remember how he demolished Yair Rodriguez in his previous appearance at the FC 290. Before that, he defeated Max Holloway three times in a row, the Korean Zombie, Brian Ortega, Jose Aldo, Chad Mendes, etc. A truly impressive record.

On the other side of the octagon, Topuria enters this bout with an unbeaten 14-0 record in the UFC, being one of the hottest names in the UFC despite being well under 30 years of age. Many believe that he isn’t ready for Volk and should have met with Yair, Ortega, or even Holloway before attacking the champ, but both Topuria and the UFC believe otherwise. 

Wins over opponents like Josh Emmett, Bryce Mitchell, Jai Herbert, and Ryan Hall are respectable, but you can’t compare any of these guys with those mentioned above. None of them was ever near reaching the throne, let alone winning the belt. Regarding Topuria’s abilities, we need to mention his extreme quickness and solid cardio. He is an all-around guy in the ring, and his explosiveness allows him to manipulate the rivals without problems. 

We respect Topuria and his quality, but on the other hand, we do not doubt that the champion has the upper hand in terms of experience. Volkanovski has faced opponents like Topuria countless times and knows the ins and outs of high-pressure situations, unlike his challenger, who still needs to learn. 

Pick: Volkanovski wins

Reaper’s One Last Shot or Borrachina’s comeback

Things have been tough for the former champ, who lost to Adesanya again before beating Vettori and losing to Du Plessis in what turned out to be a title eliminator. So, this is a do-or-die for the Kiwi, who needs to win to be in contention for another shot at the title. 

The Reaper isn’t like he used to be before: explosive, strong, and very fluid in the ring. Age took its toll, plus the injuries and 31 appearances in the octagon have slowed down Whittaker. However, his experience and standup technique are still among the best in the division.

Paulo Costa was close to becoming an influencer but decided to return to the octagon after 16 months. Why he made such a big pause, we don’t know, but three battles in the past four years are a big minus for him. That’s why a victory over Whittaker can propel him back to the top and put him in the mix for the title shot.

He is a massive guy with solid movement and a devastating hit. There aren’t too many fighters in the UFC who can hit like Borrachina, especially because he regains his weight pretty quickly following the weigh-in.

Our pick here is the Brazilian because Whittaker’s chin isn’t as strong as before, and overall, he seems washed out. Yes, Costa wasn’t in the ring too much, but that can be beneficial as well, as he didn’t have to battle with injuries, rehabs, and other stuff like his rival.

Pick: Costa wins


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