Welcome to Midnight Mania!
It’s been a good week for the young Hawaiian, Max “Blessed” Holloway, the UFC featherweight champion of the world. It was announced yesterday he will headline UFC 218 in Detroit, the main attraction of a card that also features Francis Ngannou vs. Alastair Overeem, Sergio Pettis against Henry Cejudo, and Justin Gaethje vs. Eddie Alvarez. His opponent is the venerable Frankie Edgar, whose never-say-die style means certain fireworks come December 2nd. Max is the considerable favorite:
Per @MMAOddsBreaker, Max Holloway will open a -205 betting favorite over Frankie Edgar (+165) in their 145-pound title fight at UFC 218.— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) October 4, 2017
As if that were not enough, Conor McGregor was singing his praises last week in Scotland (just before getting incredibly wasted and having a drink thrown in his face). McGregor said that Holloway has impressed him since they met back in 2012, a fight McGregor won by unanimous decision. McGregor first reminded the crowd how one-sided that fight had been, via MMAFighting.com’s Petesy Carroll:
“I sonned that young boy,” McGregor told Caroline Pearce to the elation of the crowd.
McGregor went on to say that, as someone who has taken high-profile losses, he has been impressed with how Holloway bounced back.
“He’s done a great job. He’s climbed up and claimed that featherweight belt. You see some fights, and so do the public, you see him go in there and you watch him win or lose and you watch how they act and how they carry on.
“He lost to me and he took it on the chin, he kept his mind frame sharp. Same with Poirier, he’s another guy who kept his mind frame sharp and carried on. Alvarez as well, he took it well – you’ve got to take it on the f**king chin.
“You’re gonna win some, you’re gonna lose some. Get back on your bike, study the game a bit more, put in that extra bit of work and correct those errors that you’ve seen – carry on.
“That’s what I’m doing. That’s what I’ve seen (Holloway) doing. He went on to capture the unified belt off of Aldo, even though I beat both of them. Look, it’s a hard one for me that one.”
McGregor is nothing if not a man with options. The absentee Lightweight champion is at the top of the MMA mountain in every possible way, enjoying his $100,000,000 payday from his foray into boxing against Floyd Mayweather. The 155-lb. division has proliferated with options in his absence. Kevin Lee and Tony Ferguson fight this weekend; Nate Diaz awaits his trilogy fight; Justin Gaethje could very well blossom into a must-see fight; Khabib Nurmagomedov has a unique stylistic and cultural appeal; Edson Barboza is a dark horse contender, and that is to say nothing of the chances McGregor fights someone like Georges St. Pierre, Tyron Woodley, or Paulie Malignaggi. But Holloway makes it onto that list regardless. McGregor doesn’t plan on returning to featherweight, but we could see a five-round rematch at lightweight down the road.
“If he wants to come up, then maybe. We’ll figure it out,” he said. “That’s another option, but it’s a low down the totem pole option.”
In the meantime, Holloway is happy with his new contract.
It’s good to be pissed off at the end of a training camp. Derrick Lewis is in the right head-space ahead of his bout with Fabricio Werdum.
The Black Beast also remains one of the funniest accounts on Instagram.
Andrei Arlovski is finding a second career as an actor/stuntman. This scene is great.
Daniel Cormier responds to Oezdemir’s boasts of finishing him inside two minutes:
Kevin Lee’s choice of attire today drew mixed responses, to say the least.
Kevin Lee’s outfit at media day today. Usually a good conversation starter. pic.twitter.com/dcy6ugYsOk— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) October 4, 2017
Angela Hill responded to Kevin Lee’s attire with what I believe are Usher lyrics.
He make me wanna leave the man I'm wit and start a neeeew relationship wit uuuu dis is what u dooo https://t.co/OOiPyP2Z4k— Angela Hill (@AngieOverkill) October 4, 2017
Forrest Griffin thinking maybe death threats are a step too far is Good Forrest Griffin:
Not sure where the line is but that's on the wrong side of it. With all due respect— Forrest Griffin (@ForrestGriffin) October 4, 2017
Mike Perry responds to the nicest former UFC champion around:
Ok I just don't want you to get in trouble— Forrest Griffin (@ForrestGriffin) October 4, 2017
Who... who says this?? Professional boxer Kid Chocolate, apparently.
Why is the butt on a women attractive to men? Think about what’s its used for.— Peter Quillin (@KIDCHOCOLATE) October 4, 2017
Cast your bread upon the waters, and it will return to you after many days.
Liddell & Hughes earned their keep by lobbying CA assembly & convincing Reebok fighters would be happy with sponsor https://t.co/e5V367HB6b— John S. Nash (@heynottheface) October 3, 2017
Nate Quarry’s response:
Wonder what their motivation was? Betterment of the sport or their own bank accounts? https://t.co/E4dgl4qjSj— Nathan Quarry (@NateRockQuarry) October 4, 2017
One thing about Cody Garbrandt: he has what they call loyalty. Here he works pads with his uncle:
Dillashaw, meanwhile, has been training his boxing with Cub Swanson:
A UFC fighter, in this case Felice Herrig, sharing conspiracy speculation from a questionable source? What else is new?
This is some interesting stuff right here https://t.co/H49cBlQBJV— Felice Herrig (@feliceherrig) October 4, 2017
Tony Ferguson explains why he capitalizes the first letter of every tweet. You want a thesis in APA format instead? He can do that too.
Rachael Ostovich is fighting Melinda Fabian next week on TUF:
Valentina Shevchenko might be the most outdoorsy WMMA fighter out there:
Slips, Rips and KO Clips
Shamil Abdulaev KOs Paulo Bueno in 41 s.— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) October 4, 2017
Looks like Imperator shouldn't be there (WFCA) pic.twitter.com/Q5T6IP0ZwO
I’ll be honest: my knee doesn’t raise this high. That’s a KO via flexibility.
Nasty high knee KO by Apti Bimarzaev at WFCA. The year of the knee rolls on. pic.twitter.com/EQy6Z8aXyL— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) October 4, 2017
This does look like a fun card:
Silva/Gastelum, Muslim Salikhov (rumor), now Sheymon Moraes? UFC Shanghai gonna be good. pic.twitter.com/w6wecfnOcw— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) October 4, 2017
Podcasts and Video
In case y’all forgot:
Flyin Brian J breaks down the main even this weekend:
Watch Mackenzie Dern fight for free. She returns to Legacy Fighting Championship next Friday.
Working and training MMA simultaneously is a more common occurrence than you might think.
This actually happened and it is less ridiculous than anything else in the political landscape these days. Equifax somehow came out of this data-hacking scandal with the gift of a federal contract with millions of dollars attached.
Stay woke, Maniacs! Follow me on Twitter and Facebook @Vorpality