It is past time to get on board the Blessed Express (choo choo!) because Max Holloway is already smashing records at age 27. Not only is he on a thirteen-fight win streak after last night (behind only Anderson Silva at 16) but the Hawaiian is also the single most prolific striker in UFC history, with the most significant strikes landed in any UFC round, in any UFC fight, and in any UFC career, at a staggering 1,627.
Of course, some mention must be made of the toughness of Brian Ortega to take all those punches and keep throwing back, lasting to the 4th-round bell before doctors wisely called the contest.
Official: Max Holloway’s 290 significant strikes landed at #UFC231 are a new single-fight UFC record. More figures to come.— Michael Carroll (@MJCflipdascript) December 9, 2018
MORE: Holloway (290) and Ortega (110) combine for 400 significant strikes landed, a new single-fight UFC record. The previous record belonged to Diaz vs. Cerrone at UFC 141 (334). #UFC231— Michael Carroll (@MJCflipdascript) December 9, 2018
EVEN MORE: Holloway's effort to finish the fight in the 4th round netted him 134 significant strikes landed, the most ever landed by a fighter in a single UFC round. The previous record belonged to Neil Magny's 114 vs. Hector Lombard in R2. #UFC231— Michael Carroll (@MJCflipdascript) December 9, 2018
AND LASTLY: Holloway has passed Michael Bisping (1,567) and Frankie Edgar (1,463) for the greatest tally of significant strikes landed in UFC history with 1,627. #UFC231— Michael Carroll (@MJCflipdascript) December 9, 2018
Holloway said before his last fight, a similarly stunning volume attack that overwhelmed even the dialed-in defense of Jose Aldo (you can still watch the full replay, with Aldo showing the best head movement the sport has ever seen, here), that he had been watching a lot of Vasyl Lomachenko. On the same night that Lomachenko poured it on to defeat Jose Pedrazo, Holloway showed off an increasingly sophisticated command of bewildering angles, echoing the abilities of the boxing great. Ortega was as game as an opponent has ever come, but he just couldn’t match the Hawaiian’s output. Mad Max went full Fury Road, straight through T-City.
In any discussion of who is the greatest featherweight of all time, one cannot forget the greatness of Jose Aldo, as it is the cornerstone of Max’s claim to immortality. His back-to-back beatdowns of the legend put the crown on his head, but his victory over Ortega put the jewel in the crown. This was an astonishingly violent performance, on a night of violent fights, grossing Holloway another $100,000. He deserves all the money.
Max may or may not be the greatest featherweight of all time, but he is undoubtedly the most violent as champion thus far. He breaks people who have never been broken, calling his round against both Jose Aldo and Brian Ortega. Unlike many great champions, including Jose Aldo, George St. Pierre and Jon Jones, who became more conservative once they won the belt, Holloway only seems to be upping the ante. Provided his iron chin holds, it is difficult to see any featherweight beating him. All aboard the Blessed Express, baby. It is what it is.
For complete UFC 231: “Holloway vs. Ortega” results, including play-by-play updates, click here.