After knocking out Misha Cirkunov, Volkan Oezdemir to face Jimi Manuwa

Volkan Oezdemir eyes Thiago Santos or Alexander Gustafsson for his next fight

Volkan Oezdemir is looking to fight up the rankings when he steps into the Octagon next.

The Swiss fighter returned to the win column back at UFC Busan when he defeated Aleksandar Rakic by decision. Since then, he has been waiting for his next opponents but is waiting to see how the division shakes out with the title fight and the top-ranked fighters being booked.

“Nothing is fixed now. I have some personal stuff that I need to attend,” Oezdemir told MMA Junkie. “Plus all the big dogs in the division have a fight lined up. So I am training hard and waiting to see how things unfold.”

Before the win over Rakic, Oezdemir lost three straight where it started with a TKO loss to Daniel Cormier for the belt and was then submitted by Anthony Smith. In his most recent loss, he dropped a decision to Dominick Reyes. But, many thought the Swiss native should have won.

Even though he had dropped three in a row, Volkan Oezdemir remains highly ranked and is looking to fight Thiago Santos or Alexander Gustafsson next.

“Thiago Santos will be a fun fight that will bring a lot of fireworks, and I also still want the Gustafsson fight,” Oezdemir said. “I know he plays dead until he find an easy fight. But in the meantime, I want to stay active and fight the stronger guy out there.”

Santos is expected to return to the Octagon later this year after he recovers from double knee surgery. The Brazilian is also coming off a split-decision loss to Jon Jones.

Alexander Gustafsson, meanwhile, retired after he was submitted by Anthony Smith. But, rumblings indicate he will be returning to the Octagon soon.

Volkan Oezdemir vs. either Santos or Gustafsson could easily headline a Fight Night card and be a very exciting scrap. Whether or not he will get those matchups is to be seen.

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