clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

UFC 280: Paddy Pimblett ‘cannot believe’ Charles Oliveira is the underdog to Islam Makhachev

“But the only way I see Islam winning is if he sits on top of him for five rounds, and I don’t see anyone doing that to Charles.”

UFC 280 Ceremonial Weigh-in
Charles Oliveira will look to reclaim his lightweight title at UFC 280.
Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

Paddy Pimblett can’t understand why Charles Oliveira is the underdog to Islam Makhachev given ‘Do Bronx’s’ level of competition and the fact that he has finished 10 out of his last 11 fights, with notable stoppage victories over Michael Chandler, Dustin Poirier, and Justin Gaethje.

Makhachev is on a ten-fight winning streak of his own but his highest-profile win to date is a submission victory over Dan Hooker, who is no longer ranked in the top ten. The Dagestani earned a title shot coming off a first-round TKO victory over MMA veteran Bobby Green at UFC Vegas 49.

All things considered, Pimblett thinks Oliveira should be the favorite, although he is somewhat biased given the Brazilian is one of his favorite fighters to watch in the UFC.

“I cannot believe he’s the underdog,” Pimblett said on his YouTube channel (h/t MMA Junkie). “I just don’t understand it. The people who he’s finished in a row, what he’s done to Tony (Ferguson), I don’t understand how he’s the underdog. Like I’m trying to be fair, you know what I mean?

“I like Charles to win. He’s one of my favorite fighters to watch. He’s brilliant. But the only way I see Islam winning is if he sits on top of him for five rounds, and I don’t see anyone doing that to Charles.”

Pimblett, who one day hopes to win the UFC lightweight title himself, believes Oliveira will get the finish inside three rounds and prove the oddsmakers, who have him listed as a +165 underdog, wrong Saturday.

“I have picked Charles,” Pimblett said. “So from my point of view, I think Charles will get the finish in three rounds. But I’ve seen him in an interview saying he’ll knock him out in one. If it goes to decision, it’s Makhachev. And if it’s going to be a finish, it’s going to be Charles. I’m going with Charles personally. I just think he’s fought a higher caliber of opponents. He knows how to get through these hard times.”

UFC 280: Oliveira vs. Makhachev takes place later today at Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.