Just over 48 hours away from the event, featherweight champion Max Holloway is out of UFC 226.
Holloway’s manager Brian Butler-Au from Suckerpunch Entertainment confirmed the news on Wednesday following an initial statement issued to ESPN.
According to Holloway’s manager, the Hawaiian fighter was suffering from concussion like symptoms that forced him to visit the hospital on Monday before being taken back on Wednesday night.
“Max’s team and UFC staff noticed Max was not normal since last week. This became obvious to many watching his interviews and public appearances the past few days. He was showing concussion like symptoms before he even started his weight cut and was rushed to the ER on Monday night where they admitted him overnight. Initial scans seemed okay and he was released Tuesday afternoon but symptoms still continued.
“Max fought with his team to continue the fight. He showed some improvement over the next day but was still showing obvious symptoms. After open workouts, he crashed and was very hard to wake up, when he did he has flashing vision and slurred speech. He is now back in the ER for further tests.”
It’s devastating news for Holloway but obviously his health comes first.
The UFC has not made any official announcements regarding Holloway’s removal from the card or what will happen with Ortega now that the co-main event has been scrapped.
Considering the timing, it’s not likely Ortega would remain on the card.
As for Holloway, he will continue to receive treatment in Las Vegas to ensure he’s healthy before being released.
Unfortunately this is the third fight in 2018 where Holloway has been pulled.
In March, Holloway suffered an ankle injury that forced him out of his scheduled title fight against Frankie Edgar. Holloway was then pulled from UFC 223 after stepping up on short notice to face Khabib Nurmagomedov when the New York State Athletic Commission was concerned over his weight cut.
Sadly, Holloway was then forced out of his fight with Ortega due to the concussion like symptoms.