Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Max Holloway vs. Brian Ortega On Tap for UFC 226: Miocic vs. Cormier

Featherweight champion Max Holloway will get his wish to return to action at UFC 226 as he faces off with No. 1 contender Brian Ortega on July 7 in Las Vegas.

Max Holloway wanted to make his return at UFC 226 and now he’ll get his wish.

The reigning UFC featherweight champion will put his title up for grabs when he faces No. 1 ranked contender Brian Ortega as part of International Fight Week 2018 with their bout joining UFC 226 on July 7 in Las Vegas.

Sources close to the matchup confirmed the news on Friday following an initial report from MMAJunkie.

For Holloway, this will serve as his second title defense after already defeating former featherweight champion Jose Aldo by third round TKO last December at UFC 218. Following that fight, Holloway was expected to return in March against Frankie Edgar but an ankle injury knocked him off the card just a few weeks before the event was set to take place.

Holloway then made a surprising return by accepting a fight against Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 223 on April 7 with the lightweight title on the line. Unfortunately, Holloway was later ruled out of the bout by the New York State Athletic Commission over concerns about his weight cut to get down to the 155-pound limit.

While it was a disappointing end to a unique opportunity, Holloway wasted no time turning his attention back to the featherweight division with hopes of competing at UFC 226 in July.

Meanwhile, Ortega actually ended up taking that fight with Edgar in March after Holloway suffered an injury and that’s what ultimately earned him the title shot. Ortega became the first fighter in history to earn a knockout against Edgar as he solidified his spot as the No. 1 contender in the featherweight division.

Ortega is undefeated thus far in his career while also holding a win over another top five ranked fighter in Cub Swanson in his previous bout from Dec. 2017.

Holloway vs. Ortega joins a growing line up of fights headed to UFC 226 including the main event that will see heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic take on light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier as well as highly touted heavyweight knockout artist Francis Ngannou face off with Derrick Lewis.

What are your thoughts on Max Holloway vs. Brian Ortega? Sound off in the comments and let us know! 

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