Max Holloway seems to have had his hopes of standing in for Dustin Poirier against Conor McGregor this weekend dashed after being handed a 30-day medical suspension following his defeat of Calvin Kattar last Saturday. Holloway has stuck around on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi just in case Poirier is forced to pull out of his UFC 257 bout with McGregor later this week.
The duo take to the octagon in the early hours of Sunday morning UK time in the bubble of UFC’s Yas Island in the Middle East.
And Hawaiian Holloway, who lost to McGregor back in 2013, remains on site after he improved his record to 22-6-0 with an unanimous decision victory over Kattar in the main event of UFC Fight Island 7.
Holloway produced a sublime performance and landed over 400 significant strikes to win 50-43, 50-43 and 50-42 with Kattar admitting afterwards: “Props to Max on a hell of a fight, he deserves all the praise.”
And Holloway declared: “All I’ve got to say is there is a big, big fight next week – Dustin Poirier against Conor McGregor – and guess what, your boy is staying all the way through the week.
MUST READ: Max Holloway eyeing Conor McGregor rematch if Dustin Poirier pulls out
“If anything happens, Dana [White] knows my number and he can hit me up.”
That follows similar comments from the former featherweight champion in the build-up to his fight with Kattar, as he said: “As a competitor, I’d love to [rematch McGregor].
“That was one of the fights that intrigues me. We fought a long time ago. And he knows that too.”
But his prospects of being a last-minute replacement for Poirier this week, should he be forced to drop out at the last minute for any reason such as injury or a surprise positive COVID-19 test, have taken a blow.
That’s because the official release from MMA.tv states that Holloway faces a 30-day suspension after his ‘hard bout’ and must also undergo ’21 days no contact’.
Kattar’s medical suspension meanwhile reads: ‘180 day suspension or medical clearance for nose. 60 days minimum suspension, 45 days no contact.’
That means ‘The Boston Finisher’ could be out of action for six months after suffering a broken nose against Holloway and also requiring eight staples on his scalp.
As a result of his suspension ‘Blessed’ meanwhile has effectively been ruled out of contention to replace Poirier, especially given he would be coming up against a puncher of two-weight world champion McGregor’s power.
Conor McGregor says Khabib Nurmagomedov rematch ‘easy’
Khabib Nurmagomedov confirms whether he will attend Poirier v McGregor
Conor McGregor’s ruthless opinion of Jake Paul fight after $50m offer
Despite wanting to throw down with ‘The Notorious’ once more, Holloway insists he likes McGregor.
Recalling his previous fight with the Irishman eight years ago, he said: “He was super cool. I mean, like, the dude, like… we’d get in each other’s faces for weigh-ins.
“But right before the weigh-ins, we’re in the back and we’re standing next to each other because you’re like this (puts his forefingers together) before you walk out.
“And he’s like, ‘Hey.’ I told him, ‘Hey, nice shorts.’ And he’s like, ‘You too.’
“We had some cool looking shorts on at the time. And then that’s it. The dude is a good guy.”
While previewing his UFC 257 scrap with Poirier earlier this month, McGregor – who came out of his third retirement to beat Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone in stunning fashion a year ago – said: “He’s a good fighter, even a great fighter, but great is still levels below me. I’ll knock Dustin out inside 60 seconds.”
Source: Read Full Article