Shavkat Rakhmonov’s Potential in the UFC
Undefeated welterweight prospect Shavkat Rakhmonov returned to action this last Saturday, handily defeating Carlston Harris with a spinning wheel kick and punches to finish it off.
Rakhmonov, now 3-0 in the UFC and 15-0 as a professional has made his presence known in the welterweight division, putting the whole division on notice. Holding an undefeated record, with nothing but finishes, it’s clear that Rakhmonov is one hell of a contender in the UFCs welterweight division. The question is, however, what exactly is his potential?
After beating Alex Olivera in his UFC debut, Michel Prazeres, and now handing Carlston Harris his first UFC loss, it would be likely that we see the UFC matchmakers match him up with a top 15 welterweight. Something that according to Rakhmonov, he is ready for, stating that he is mentally “ready for top 15 [or] top 10” opposition.
Shavkat Rakhmonov made a statement in his UFC debut by submitting Alex Oliveira with a guillotine 💪
Stream the #UFC254 main card at 2 PM ET ▶️ https://t.co/SNfhP07qSt pic.twitter.com/4W4l00quDt
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) October 24, 2020
Frankly, I agree. Rakhmonov, much like Khamzat Chimaev, is on a fast rise to the top of the division. It would also seem like many media members agree. Following the recent victory, Luke Thomas stated on the Morning Kombat podcast that “this guy is going to mow through some of your favorite fighters and he is going to contend for a title at some point.”
Clearly, the fighter from Kazakhstan has some major hype around him, and for good reason. For someone who has a fantastic and well-rounded skill set, we need to see him against higher-ranked opposition. However, I would still like to see him against someone not quite in the top 15. Rakmonov’s call out of Michel Pereira, I believe is the perfect test for him at this point.
Pereira, who coming off a decision win at UFC 270 is another contender knocking at the door of the welterweights division top 15. This fight would frankly be a must-see, both stylistically and action-wise.
If however, the UFC decides to push Rakhmonov quicker, I would love to see a matchup with Li Jingliang who is currently ranked 13th. I think pushing any higher than that could be a mistake for not only the UFC but also Rahkmonov. As a slow and steady rise through the rankings would truly cement his potential legacy.
Either way, you might as well hop on the Shavkat Rakhmonov hype train now because I don’t see his stock and potential falling anytime soon.
Shavkat Rakhmonov is the guy to watchout for in the welterweight division #ufcvegas47 pic.twitter.com/Rtuh2tXvSC
— UFC Kenya (@UFCFansKenya) February 6, 2022
As a recent graduate from Lewis-Clark State College with a B.S. in History, Bjorn first fell in love with mixed martial arts when he watched UFC 196. As a contributor for MyMMANews, Bjorn matches his love for MMA, history, and writing.