Welcome to Midnight Mania!
Featherweight fireworks will join the usual red, white, and blue variety in July.
Per ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Featherweight kingpin, Max Holloway, will return to cage opposite high-flying kickboxer, Yair Rodriguez, on July 17, 2021 at UFC Fight Night 191. Currently, the event’s location has yet to be announced.
2021 may end up a banner year for Holloway, who rebounded from a pair of highly competitive decision losses to Alexander Volkanovski with one of the best performances in UFC history. He absolutely battered Calvin Kattar, setting all sorts of ridiculous striking records against a rather accomplished striker.
Holloway made his claim as “best boxer in the UFC” that night, and if he wins in another main event, another title shot seems very probable.
On the other hand, it’s been quite a long time since “Pantera” last stepped into the Octagon. Rodriguez hasn’t fought since a “Fight of the Night”-winning victory over Jeremy Stephens in October 2019, but the No. 3-ranked Featherweight contender is still riding a three-fight unbeaten streak.
We’ll just have to wait and see if Rodriguez’s path ever crosses Zabit Magomedov, as that’s one of the more cursed match ups in MMA at the moment. Still, this is one hell of an alternative!
Is this the largest height and reach discrepancy between Middleweights possible? Either way, both Kevin Holland and Deron Winn can definitely help one another improve.
A strange fact made true by even stranger circumstances:
Paul Felder gives his advice to the next generation:
This is some seriously impressive hip mobility.
Nicolas Dalby looked really sharp last time out.
Israel Adesanya’s ability to both take himself incredibly serious and do something purposefully goofy like Naruto running is quality.
Speaking of “Stylebender,” I definitely think a prime Luke Rockhold could have given him trouble. However, that version of the Californian only still exists in his own mind until he can prove it once more in the cage.
Slips, rips, and KO clips
Shin to the chin!
A sad anniversary of one of MMA’s great “What ifs?” TJ Grant was on fire ahead of his would-be title shot, and there was something of a conspiracy at the time that UFC paid him off to wait so Anthony Pettis could have the shot instead ... NOPE!
Eight years ago today, TJ Grant earned a lightweight title shot when he knocked out Gray Maynard.— Alex Behunin (@AlexBehunin) May 25, 2021
TJ would never fight for the title due to injuries and eventually retiring.pic.twitter.com/xywlzfyCfG
This is peak MMA, and nobody can tell me any different.
When you open the selfie camera by accident:
Midnight Music: I let Jordan pick tonight, and she’s in a Summer reggae vibe lately.
Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.