Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) featherweight champion, Max Holloway, is a tough S.O.B. and the kind of champion who would have no problem with a quick turnaround, something the promotion is undoubtedly hoping to capitalize on for the Hawaiian’s next title defense.
Holloway, still just 27 years old, retained his featherweight title by outclassing former lightweight champion, Frankie Edgar, in the UFC 240 pay-per-view (PPV) main event last night (Sat., July 27, 2019) inside Rogers Arena in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
“Everybody said I wasn’t going to be as good a wrestler as this guy, everyone said I couldn’t keep the pace, I wanted to prove a point and go five rounds with him,” Holloway said during his post-fight interview.
UFC President Dana White is hoping to break several records this fall when Robert Whittaker defends his middleweight title against interim straphanger Israel Adesanya at UFC 243 in Melbourne, and the addition of top featherweight contender, Alexander Volkanovski — born and raised in Australia — certainly wouldn't hurt.
Max Holloway vs. Alexander Volkanovski championship co-main event?
That would electrify the fans in attendance and also help keep the 145-pound division moving right along, since the next available contender without a loss to Holloway is No. 5-ranked Zabit Magomedsharipov. Sure, Henry Cejudo wants to throw his name into the mix, but “Triple C” has work to do at both flyweight and bantamweight before he starts changing lanes.
The problem with this scenario comes from what we saw in the UFC 240 headliner. Edgar is without question one of the best featherweights in the world and Holloway (21-4) was able to shut him down for 25 minutes. That’s bad news for Volkanovski, who like Edgar, stands 5’6”, because I’m not sure I saw any area in which “The Great” could capitalize.
As far as featherweight is concerned, “Blessed” is best.
With wins over Edgar, Brian Ortega, and Jose Aldo (x2), there isn’t much to left for Holloway to prove in his current division, which is why he’s not ruling out a return to 155 pounds, even though he got worked by Dustin Poirier earlier this year. First, he’ll need to shut down Volkanovski and it’s up to UFC if Magomedsharipov can score another win this year and get himself into the conversation.
Volkanovski (20-1) is no chump and the last thing anyone wants to do it overlook him, but taking into consideration his wins over Aldo and Chad Mendes, is there any skill set in which he’s leaps and bounds above Holloway? Based on what we saw against Edgar, and just about everyone else, probably not.
All aboard the “Blessed” express!
For much more on UFC 240, including live results, play-by-play updates, videos, reactions, breaking news and so much more, head over to our “Holloway vs. Edgar” live story stream by clicking here.