Both men will be looking to secure their place opposite UFC Featherweight Champion Alexander Volkanovski with an impressive performance inside the Apex on Saturday. For Holloway, a victory will almost certainly secure a trilogy fight against “The Great.” If that comes to fruition, the Hawaiian will head into the clash 0-2 against the Australian.
Holloway’s reign as 145-pound king, which included title defenses against José Aldo, Brian Ortega, and Frankie Edgar, came to an end at UFC 245. In the co-main event, “Blessed” fell on the wrong side of a narrow decision after five rounds of competitive action against Volkanovski.
Seven months later, Holloway had an immediate chance at redemption. In an even tighter affair, many believed the 29-year-old had done enough to regain the belt. Unfortunately for him and his fans, a strong final few rounds from the champ was enough to secure his second consecutive victory over Holloway.
Having rebounded in style against Calvin Kattar this year, Holloway will be looking to move on step closer to a second dose of championship glory when he faces the returning Rodriguez on November 13.
Holloway Looks To Top Record-Breaking Kattar Win
Despite facing one of the most explosive men in the featherweight division, whose only UFC defeat came by way of a doctor’s stoppage against Edgar, Holloway is looking to deliver a performance that resembles his memorable headlining victory over Kattar in January.
From the damage he inflicted on “The Boston Finisher” to his memorable interaction with the commentary team mid-exchange, Holloway’s display was incredible. During the 25-minute contest, “Blessed” set the UFC single-fight records for total strikes landed and thrown, significant strikes landed and attempted, strike differential, distance strikes landed, significant head strikes landed, and significant body strikes landed.
According to UFC Stats, Holloway threw a mind-blowing 774 significant strikes. During a recent appearance on DC & RC, the former champion set himself a new target for his next Octagon outing.
“He’s (Rodriguez) a dangerous man, super explosive, he’s got a lot of spinning stuff, a lot of unorthodox stuff. I’m looking forward to it. I want to go out there, what was the last one, I threw like 790 punches or something. If we can get to like 900 that would be great, for this one. So, you know, just trying to raise the bar”
Despite suffering back-to-back defeats to the champ, the manner in which he lost, coupled with his latest appearance in the cage, means Holloway remains the division’s top contender. However, if he’s to book his place against Volkanovski in 2022, the 29-year-old will have to get through Rodriguez first, who will no doubt be looking to upset the odds come fight night.
Who do you think will have their hand raised in the UFC Vegas 42 main event, Max Holloway or Yair Rodriguez?