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Morning Report: Despite loss to Dustin Poirier, Max Holloway believes he’s still ‘in the mix’ at lightweight

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

At UFC 236 last month, Max Holloway challenged Dustin Poirier for the interim lightweight title. He came up short, losing a hard-fought unanimous decision. But just because he lost his first bid for a UFC lightweight championship, that doesn’t mean he’s done with the division forever. In fact, Holloway says he still sees a future for himself at lightweight, sooner rather than later.

“Birds fly, fishes swim, I fight,” Holloway told MMA Junkie recently. “It ain’t nothing. You send me a contract with Daniel Cormier’s name on top tomorrow, you know I’m signing it. ‘DC’ I love you, my man, but I’m a fighter. It is what it is. This is a bump in the road and I can’t wait to get back. ’55 is still there. ’55 there’s a lot of challenges.

“When I lost to Dustin the first time at ’45, the ladder was so long to the belt. But the ’55 ladder, it’s right there. I’m in the mix. If I go up there I feel I’ll be right in the mix with all the top contenders. No disrespect to them, but I think it’s a fun weight class to be. We’ll see what happens.”

UFC 136 was Holloway’s first time competing at 155 pounds since he was a teenager and many speculated that the jump up in weight played a role in Poirier’s victory. Holloway actually out-landed Poirier in the fight, but Poirier, who has been competing at lightweight for years, took the unanimous decision in part because his strikes appeared to be the more damaging blows. But Holloway was quick to write off the size difference as a major factor, saying that he will compete at lightweight again in the future, and maybe even heavier.

“The adjusting, whatever, I’m a fighter,” Holloway said. “If they called me up to fight tomorrow, I’ll fight tomorrow. That’s what I do. I got no excuses. I ain’t taking nothing away from Dustin. You guys will see. The next time I’m at ’55, the next time we at ’70, 185 – whatever weight class I choose to do [you will see].”

But for now, Holloway has his hands full with his own division. The UFC featherweight champion is suddenly sitting atop a division filled with challengers to his throne. Up next for “Blessed” is former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar. Then, should he get past Edgar, a defense against Alexander Volkanovski appears to be in the offing. Volkanovski was upset when he got passed over for a title shot in favor of Edgar, but, speaking at Tactical Strength and Conditioning (via Hawaii News Now) Holloway was quick to remind everyone the long road he took to get to the title, and said he’s be more than willing to oblige Volkanovski, after he handles business against Edgar.

“The UFC was holding off for that Alex and Jose [Aldo] fight and I think they wanted to see something more, I don’t know. Maybe they put him in the oven to let him bake a little more for me. Look at what I had to do, you know? I had to bake in the oven for a bit. I think they had the temperature on at about 200 [degrees] or something. It is what it is. I can’t wait. If that’s the guy and that’s the date, that’s the date. But first things first: We got “The Answer” and I got a bunch of questions so I can’t wait.”

Max Holloway is expected to defend his UFC featherweight title against Frankie Edgar on July 27 at UFC 240 in Edmonton.


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Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.



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