The Brazilian star challenged Irish fighter Conor McGregor for a shot at the 155lb title. However, the Irishman’s return is not anticipated until 2023. And Oliveira acknowledges that he preferred to take on the Irishman but was ‘forced’ to face Makhachev.
“I didn’t want this fight. Everyone knows it,” Oliveira said when asked about his upcoming fight against Makhachev. “I wanted the big payment from the other fight. However, everyone knows that I’m a UFC employee. You can’t escape that. So we tried to negotiate from every angle.”
“I would have chosen Conor if I could but he is silent. So what popped up instead was Makhachev and he deserves all the respect in the world. Unfortunately, the fight didn’t come to Brazil or neutral ground, it went to their territory but you saw what happened when it went to Gaethje’s house and it will be no different this time.”