A lot of fighters would jump at the opportunity to fight Conor McGregor, due to the paycheck that comes with it. But, it sounds like Max Holloway might take a bout with Khabib Nurmagomedov, over an opportunity to rematch the superstar.
Holloway and McGregor fought back in 2013, and the latter won the bout via decision. After Holloway started putting together wins, which are part of his current, 12 fight winning streak, the Hawaiian fighter called for a rematch with McGregor. But, more recently, Holloway has talked more about entrenching his legacy, rather than facing the lightweight champ again.
“You know, everybody keep talking about me and a guy too. That Irish man [Conor McGregor],” Holloway said. “Everybody want to see us run that back, everybody seems to not be talking about Khabib [Nurmagomedov]. I want Khabib. You know, to be the best you got to beat the best and one of those guys is Khabib. A lot of guys draw Tony [Ferguson]’s name. I remember Tony saying that he wanted to come down to 145-pounds, but they all can stay up there. Stay at 155-pounds, no excuses, let me come up and let me fight. I’m a big boy and we can go up. And 170-pounds ain’t so far after that.”
“I’m a Samoan, I’m Hawaiian, I’m Polynesian. I love eating food,” added Holloway. “You guys know I love cupcakes. I’m going to put my weight on and we’ll see what happens. No one’s safe. No one’s safe. I’m willing. I’m ready to go. After this injury we’ll get back to it at 145-pounds and we’ll go from there. That’s the beauty [of how I’d stop the pressure and takedowns of Nurmagomedov], we don’t know until we get in there…”
Now, Holloway didn’t explicitly say he’d take the Nurmagomedov bout over McGregor, but it sounds like that might be the case, if both were presented to him. Does this mean he has no interest in fighting McGregor again? Of course not.
Surely Holloway would love to get that loss back, and of course, the money he’d make from round two with the star would be massive.
Before any bouts at 155 can happen for Holloway, he needs to get by Brian Ortega. The two are expected to fight early to mid summer.