The Octagon returns to Toronto on Saturday night with Max’Blessed’ Holloway protecting his featherweight belt against undefeated Brian’T-City Ortega in the UFC 231 headliner at Scotiabank Arena.
As of early Friday night, most novels had Ortega (14-0-1 MMA, 6-0-1 UFC) listed as a -125 favored with a total of 3.5 rounds (‘under’ -125,’over’ -105). Holloway was the brief’chalk’ for several months until Thursday if the 27-year-old Ortega took on the favourite function.
Holloway (19-3 MMA, 15-3 UFC) has won 12 consecutive fights since losing a unanimous decision against Conor’The Notorious’ McGregor in UFC Boston on August 17 of 2013. In this incredible run, the 27-year-old Hawaiian has finished nine of 12 foes and collected five fight-night bonuses.
Holloway entered the name image in 2015 by submitting Cub Swanson, beating Charles Oliveira and earning decision victories over Cole Miller and Jeremy Stephens. Subsequently in 2016 Holloway knocked off Ricardo Lamas by choice, enticing’The Bully’ to a swing-for-the-fences competition in the final 10 minutes of this garbage (it was barbarous!) .
The victory over Lamas garnered Holloway a shot at the interim 145-pound strap against former lightweight champion Anthony’Showtime’ Pettis. Holloway won the belt by simply taking out Pettis using a third-round knockout at UFC 206 at Toronto.
Next,’Blessed’ took on the mythical Jose Aldo Jr. to unify the featherweight belts. Holloway went into Aldo’s hometown of Rio and beat him by way of third-round KO at UFC 212. Subsequently in the rematch in Detroit in UFC 218, Holloway once more won using a third-round KO of Aldo on Dec. two of 2017.
Ad Coming into 2018, Holloway had the look of one the promotion’s most dominant champions. But he had to withdraw from his scheduled March 3 title defense against former lightweight champ Frankie Edgar because of an injury. When Tony Ferguson was hurt doing press a week before facing Khabib Nurmagomedov for Ferguson’s interim lightweight buckle, Holloway accepted an offer to confront Nurmagomedov on just six days of notice.
The fight on April 7 didn’t occur, however, because the New York Athletic Commission compelled Holloway to quit cutting weight — out of health/safety concerns — on Friday morning. He had been scheduled to defend his featherweight title against Ortega in UFC 226 on July 7, however, he was pulled in the struggle due to”concussion-like symptoms”
Holloway was put on the shelf while doctors ran various tests. The medical people never really figured out exactly what the problem was for the featherweight kingpin, but they nonetheless cleared him to return to fighting. There was a whole lot of chatter concerning how Holloway’s weight cut goes, but he stepped on the scale this morning and then hit his mark with a half-pound to spare at 144.5 lbs.
Ortega also had an easy weight reduction and was among the first fighters to generate his or her number. He’s less than 24 hours off from his shot at satisfying a lifelong fantasy.
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