Who is the greatest featherweight mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter of all time?
I voted for reigning 145-pound titleholder Max Holloway, as did Joe Rogan, for sending Brian Ortega to the back of the line last Saturday night in the UFC 231 pay-per-view (PPV) main event (video here). But not everyone seems to be in agreement.
”You’re wrong,” Holloway told reporters about being the best ever (via MMA Fighting). “I still believe the greatest featherweight of all time is Jose Aldo. When I’m 30 or 31, or his age, then you ask me if I’m the greatest featherweight of all time if I’m still here. But, at the end of the day, I just want to be pound for pound No. 1.”
He’s certainly on his way.
The victory over Ortega was his thirteenth straight, a span that includes 10 violent finishes (two of them coming against Aldo). The Hawaiian hasn’t tasted defeat since Conor McGregor beat him on the scorecards more than five years back.
Is that enough to put McGregor over Holloway in the “best ever” discussion?
“This guy has got a win over me when we were kids in a ‘Fight Night’ show — I think the main event was (Chael) Sonnen and Shogun Rua,” Holloway told The MMA Hour. “I don’t know if the two of them are in the UFC anymore. You know me and him made $12k that night and I think he’s happy to hold onto that. That’s the kind of person he is.”
Aldo (27-4) held the featherweight title in World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) before crossing over to UFC in early 2011. His 145-pound run included 18 straight wins with nine finishes, including title defenses over Frankie Edgar and Chad Mendes, just to name a few. McGregor (27-4), meanwhile, failed to defend his featherweight title before moving up to lightweight.
Welcome to the “Blessed” era.