UFC 267 Results: Islam Makhachev Submits Dan Hooker, States Case for Title Shot

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Islam Makhachev and Thiago Moises, UFC Vegas 31
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - JULY 17: (L-R) Islam Makhachev of Russia punches Thiago Moises of Brazil in their lightweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on July 17, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Riding an eight-fight win streak into UFC 267 in Abu Dhabi on Saturday, Islam Makhachev had a chance to prove himself worthy of a title shot against the always game Dan Hooker.

The heir-apparent to to Khabib Nurmagomedov had long been considered a threat at 155lbs. With each subsequent win, the question became less about if he would challenge for a title, but when.

Hooker taking the fight on short notice was commendable. It also proved to be foolhardy.

Almost immediately, Makhachev fired a hook, ducked down, and secured a takedown. Sitting in half-guard, putting his full weight on Hooker, Makhachev softened his opponent up with punches, although he was warned several times to avoid the back of the head.

Hooker had to busy himself preventing Makhachev from passing to guard. Makhavchev, however, isolated a wrist, moved to side control, and locked on with a kimura. Hooker simply could not defend the submission. Makhachev wrenched on the limb, leaving Hooker with absolutely no choice but to submit. Had he not, he would have been leaving Abu Dhabi with a broken arm.

Nine in a row is where Islam Makhachev now sits in the UFC’s lightweight division. After starting the night ranked #5, the Dagestani fighter now inches closer to gold.

“Now it’s time,” Makhachev said following the victory. Citing his nine-fight win streak, he added he was ready for the title shot. “MMA ground game, I have best in the division.”

Charles Oliveira, the UFC’s submission king, might have something to say about that. Oliveira defends the title against Dustin Poirier this December, but it feels like a meeting between the two could come in 2022.

Official Result: Islam Makhachev def. Dan Hooker by submission (kimura), Round 1, 2:25

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