biographical data

Islam Makhachev biography: 13 things about UFC Lightweight Champion

Islam Ramazanovich Makhachev (Исла́м Рамаза́нович Маха́чев) is a combat sambo fighter and a professional mixed martial artist. He is 5’10” tall and he competes in the lightweight division.

From February 12, 2011 to September 7, 2014, Makhachev competed in M-1 Global. On October 2, 2014, he signed a four-fight contract with the Ultimate Fighting Championship, which is based in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States.


Makhachev was a protégé of former UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov‘s father Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov, who passed away on July 3, 2020. After retiring in 2020, Khabib started actively coaching Makhachev and cornering for his fights.

An ethnic Lak and a Muslim, Makhachev was born in Makhachkala, Dagestan, Russia but he grew up in Burshi, Dagestan. Here are 13 more things about him:

  1. On August 1, 2010, he made his professional MMA debut at “Tsumada Fighting Championship 4” in Tsumadinsky, Russia where he defeated Magomed Bekbolatov via unanimous decision.
  2. In 2011, he defeated five MMA opponents namely Tengiz Khuchua, Martiros Grigoryan, Magomed Ibragimov, Vladimir Egoyan and Migel Grigoryan.
  3. On September 2, 2012, he submitted Anatoly Kormilkin via armbar at “Lion’s Fights 2” in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
  4. In 2013, he defeated Mansour Barnaoui and Rander Junio both via unanimous decision.
  5. In 2014, he submitted Yuri Ivlev and Ivica Trušček.
  6. On May 23, 2015, he made his UFC debut at “UFC 187” in Las Vegas where he submitted Leo Kuntz via rear-naked choke. On October 3, 2015, he was knocked out by Adriano Martins at “UFC 192” in Houston, Texas, USA, which marked his first professional MMA loss.
  7. On September 17, 2016, he defeated Chris Wade via unanimous decision at “UFC Fight Night 94” in Hidalgo, Texas. On November 11, 2016, he won the gold medal in the 74kg category in the 2016 Fédération Internationale Amateur de Sambo (FIAS) World Combat Sambo Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria.
  8. On February 11, 2017, he defeated Nik Lentz via unanimous decision at “UFC 208” in Brooklyn, New York, USA.
  9. In 2018, he defeated two UFC opponents namely Gleison Tibau and Kajan Johnson.
  10. He defeated Arman Tsarukyan at “UFC Fight Night 149” in Saint Petersburg, Russia on April 20 2019 and Davi Ramos at “UFC 242” in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on September 7, 2019 both via unanimous decision.
  11. In 2021, he submitted three UFC opponents namely Drew Dober, Thiago Moises and Dan Hooker.
  12. On February 26, 2022, he knocked out Bobby Green at “UFC Vegas 49” in Enterprise, Nevada. On October 22, 2022, he became the new UFC Lightweight Champion by submitting Charles Oliveira at “UFC 280” in Abu Dhabi.
  13. He was 31 years old when he successfully defended his UFC Lightweight Championship title from Alexander Volkanovski via unanimous decision on February 12, 2023 at “UFC 284” in Perth, Australia, which improved his professional MMA record to 23 wins and 1 loss.

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