On Saturday, Nov. 4, MMA reporter Ariel Helwani reported that a rematch between UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev and former champion Charles Oliveira was in the works for UFC 297 in Toronto, Canada.
"The current plan - though not finalized just yet - is to have Islam Makhachev x Charles Oliveira 2 - headline UFC 297. That event, while not officially announced yet, is currently slated to Jan. 20 in Toronto," he tweeted. "The original plan for that main was Volkanovski x Topuria, but now the plan is for that to be on the February PPV."
But Oliveira says that's news to him.
“It was quite a deep cut,” Oliveira said during UFC Sao Paulo's post-event show (h/t MMA Junkie). “I don’t have any planned, scheduled fights at the moment. We get to take our time to get a good recovery, so I might go back into training in about a week or so.”
Charles Oliveira says announced fight with Islam Makhachev is 'first time we heard about it'
Oliveira and Makhachev were slated for a rematch at UFC 294 but Oliveira suffered a serious cut in training and was forced out. In his place UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski stepped in, hoping to earn his second UFC title. Makhachev finished him easily in the first round.
Though Oliveira says he hasn't heard anything about their fight getting booked, it does seem like he'd accept it, if asked.
“We just heard this from the locker room,” Oliveira said. “People were asking us on the messages about getting it. This is the first time we heard about it. That’s the timeline, January maybe. So who knows?”
Makhachev's manager Ali Abdelaziz also says the report of a booking is "fake news" on Twitter.
"Fake news [Islam Makhachev] fighting Charles Oliveira in January," he tweeted.