Thanks to Frankie Edgar’s broken face, undisputed Featherweight champion Max Holloway and the man he defeated six months ago to claim the title, Jose Aldo, ran it back tonight (Sat., Dec. 2, 2017) in the pay-per-view (PPV) main event of UFC 218, which took place inside Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan. Aldo was out to prove that his is still the best 145-pound fighter alive, while Holloway was eager to demonstrate that their first fight was not some fluke.
In the end, it was Holloway who once again proved that he is the cream of the crop, once again stopping Aldo via technical knockout in the third round.
Holloway came out pumping the jab early as Aldo backed up, taking his time and waiting for his opportunity to mount a counter attack. He fired off a winging combination, then a solid leg kick, as Holloway circled away from danger. Holloway went for a bitch slap and Aldo responded with hard actual punches that grazed the Hawaiian’s face. Aldo scored with some nice body shots as Holloway continued to work behind his straight left jab. It began to pay early dividends, with Aldo sporting a red mouse under his right eye. Holloway tried to close the round with an exclamation point, but Aldo drilled him with a solid uppercut as they headed to their corners.
Aldo actually looked a bit winded between rounds, while Holloway appeared freash as a daisy. Holloway continued to flick out the jab as Aldo went back to attacking his legs. Holloway pressed forward as Aldo continued to back up, exchanging some nice body blows. Aldo fired off a nice hook, then a punishing low kick, as Holloway tried to close the distance. Aldo went for another leg kick and Holloway caught it, but he was unable to knock the Brazilian off-balance. Holloway landed a fantastic one-two combination and Aldo returned fire as the pair momentarily sparked a firefight. Holloway appeared to get the better of the exchange as the two once again returned to their corners for a quick break.
Holloway continued to push the pace to start the third frame, blitzing Aldo from different angles. Aldo once again focused his attack on Holloway’s legs, but it didn’t appear to slow him down in the slightest. Holloway cornered Aldo and began to talk some smack, peppering him with jabs upstairs and downstairs. Three minutes into the round and Holloway began to dial it up — drilling Aldo with a barrage of unanswered shots. At this point he appeared to be on autopilot, but nonetheless, continued to fire back. Aldo somehow was able to stay on his feet, but then in desperation, went for a takedown. Holloway was all over him, unleashing an absurd amount of ground-and-pound. Aldo continued to move and buck, but his face was a bloody disaster. The referee gave him every chance to remain in the fight, but Holloway was just too good, too overwhelming.
The Holloway Era is in full effect — there is no denying it. He has stopped the greatest Featherweight of all time, twice, in back-to-back bouts. And he’s just 25 years old.
For complete UFC 218: “Holloway vs. Aldo 2” results, including play-by-play updates, click here.