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Max Holloway not ready to commit to Alexander Volkanovski fight at UFC 243 just yet

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UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway wants to fight again in 2019 but he’s not quite ready to commit to a quick turnaround to face Alexander Volkanovski in October.

Holloway defended his title for the third time on Saturday night with a unanimous decision victory over Frankie Edgar. While he seemed to walk away from the bout unscathed, the 27-year old Hawaiian wasn’t going to just accept his next fight without going through proper testing to see if he would be physically ready in time for UFC 243

That card takes place in a 60,000 seat stadium in Melbourne, Australia, which also happens to be Volkanovski’s home country.

“We’ll see what happens,” Holloway said at the post fight press conference about potentially returning in October. “I look fine, I look great but I’ll wait till my team, I’ll wait till my coaches. We’ve got to get medical testing.

“I’ve fought three title fights in seven months. I want to fight one more time this year but we’ve got to go take all the right tests and see and we’ll go from there.”

Holloway understands the urgency coming from Volkanovski, who is the clear cut No. 1 contender in the division after picking up back-to-back wins over Chad Mendes and former champion Jose Aldo.

A chance to compete at home is a rare treat for some fighters and Holloway knows how much that would mean to Volkanovski because he’s been desperately trying to get the UFC to go to Hawaii for several years.

“I know how bad I want to fight at home and I don’t want to take that away from the guy but at the end of the day, I’ve just got to go see the doctors and get checked up and we’ll go from there,” Holloway said. “At the end of the day, a stadium and stuff is cool. I definitely want to fight before the end of the year for sure.

“UFC has this habit of putting me the first week of December. Hopefully if I’m medically cleared and everything and I’m good to go by December, I can get that first week cause that’s been Max week the last three years I think.”

If UFC 243 doesn’t happen, Holloway says he would happily accept an opportunity to compete at UFC 244, which is scheduled for Madison Square Garden in New York in November or perhaps even the year-end card in December.

As great as it all sounds, Holloway is mostly concerned about his health right now, which is why he’s not going to decide anything until after he’s medically cleared to compete again.

“We’ll see. New York sounds cool. Volkanovski in [Australia] sounds cool. So we’ll see,” Holloway said. “I’ve got to go check with the doctors, get checked and we’ll go from there.”