Max Holloway walked into UFC 212 as the Interim Featherweight champion and a dead even odd against then current champion Jose Aldo. In the first round, he seemed to not show his true side as Aldo took that round with his speed and power to the point it appeared Aldo was going to remain champion once the fight was over. But things took a turn in round two as Holloway was more efficient with his striking and learning just how Aldo fought as the fight progressed. Then when the third round came Holloway knew he had Aldo’s number and before the fans could blink he had dropped the former king and just went all at him until finally getting the TKO stoppage at 4:13, thus becoming the new UFC Featherweight Champion and first American to hold the title in the division.
Now that he’s the new champion and has continued his impressive winning streak fans now wonder who will be his next opponent to defend his gold against.
Yes, a top wrestler of the division would be a perfect fit for Holloway as he took out the man who beat Edgar twice and it would only make sense for him to show just how great of an athlete he is by taking on a wrestler since they are considered to be some of the best fighters in the sport. It would even be interesting to watch how Edgar holds up to a fighter with power and cardio that Holloway has, which could lead to this possible fight being a ‘Fight of the Night’ ready to go down.
Now, immediate rematches are not always the best options, but in this case it would make sense as Aldo is considered one of the greatest pound-for-pound fighters in the world and the fact that he put up a fight for about halfway through shows he still has some fight left in him to possibly reclaim the thrown he held for so long. It also would even give Holloway another chance to show great improvements from their first meeting and thus prove to the world that he only gets better after every fight no matter what the result.
Now Bermudez has just recently suffered a loss so it probably doesn’t seem like he should be next, but why he could is all for the fact he is one of three fighters who holds a victory over Holloway with a close split decision victory back at UFC 160. Also, like with Edgar, Bermudez is a well-rounded wrestler who truly could be a great challenge for Holloway once again to show he has the ability to stand toe-to-toe with grapplers of all calibers no matter how well-rounded they are.
Speaking of victories, the former Featherweight and current Lightweight Champion Conor McGregor would be a great first title defense for Holloway as he was one of the very few fights McGregor was unable to finish, which shows just how tough of a fighter Holloway. Even after the loss, Holloway did not let it stop him from reaching the top as he changed his game plan along with his training to where he would go on a two-fight losing streak to a now eleven fight winning streak giving him the four longest winning streak in UFC history. It just once again goes to prove that he only gets better after every fight by training harder and learning from his mistakes.
Whoever the UFC decides to hand Holloway next it completely up to them and fans will just sit back and wait for the news to come.