UFC Fight Night: Holloway vs Allen

UFC Fight Night: Holloway vs Allen

Max Holloway and Arnold Allen collide in the fight night main event on Saturday in Kansas City, Missouri. Max Holloway is currently the #2 ranked featherweight in the world and coming off of his third loss to the featherweight champ, the man a lot of people have number 1 pound-for-pound Alex Volkanovski, no shame in that loss for Max and he looks to have taken off the time necessary to process the loss and allow his body recover. Arnold Allen on the other hand is currently on a ten fight win streak within the organisation and is yet to face defeat inside the octagon. Although he has not faced close to the level of completion that Max has, there’s no doubting the momentum Arnold has gathered and he could well see himself fighting for a title next with an impressive performance over Max Holloway who is undoubtedly one of the divisions all time greats.

Arnold is a fairly reserved, softly spoken man from Ipswich. He’s been in no hurry to climb the ranks only fighting more than once in a calendar year on two occasions, crawling towards the top five in no great hurry despite having one of the promotions most impressive win streaks which sits at ten straight. There’s no doubt Arnold’s star power and name value will skyrocket with a victory on Saturday night against former pound for pound king Max Holloway.

Speaking of Max ‘Blessed’ Holloway, it feels like a while since we’ve seen him bless the octagon with his presence. He’s only made the walk once since November 2021, on that night he picked up an impressive win against current interim champion Yair Rodriguez. After going down 3-0 against current champ Alex Volkanovski Max was in a sticky spot as many believed he was still levels above the fighters occupying the spaces lower than him in the division. You could say the Brit has arrived at the perfect time for Holloway, providing him with fresh competition and a chance to prove he is still the top contender in the featherweight division.

In this section I am gonna pinpoint three other fights on the card that are definitely worth checking out. The co main event between two all action featherweights should be entertaining as the legendary Edson Barboza takes on Billy Quarantillo. Barboza who is looking to get another run going following more than a year out rehabilitating a serious knee injury. The 37 year old who was once considered a legit title contender at lightweight, looks to get back in the win column after two consecutive defeats at featherweight and the always game Billy Quarantillo stands in his way. Always fun to watch, Quarantillo secured himself  the biggest win of his fight career to date with a performance bonus victory over Alexander Hernandez in December. He will look to carry that momentum into this highly anticipated matchup.

It looks to be a similar story in the light heavyweight clash just before our co main as Dustin Jacoby faces the always intimidating Azamat Murzakanov. Jacoby had gone seven undefeated in the UFC until coming up short against Khalil Rountree Jr on the scorecards last time out in a fight many feel he was unlucky to lose. This weekend presents him with the perfect opportunity to bounce back by taking Murzakanovs undefeated record. Stoppage wins against Devin Clark and Tafon Nchukwi to begin his UFC career saw Murzakanov earn a ranking in no time within the organisation, he can no doubt take another leap up the rankings with third straight victory on Saturday night. Expect heavy shots from start to finish with both men being knockout specialists, this is my pick for fight of the night.

Finally we have the bantamweight clash between Pedro Munhoz and Chris Gutierrez. Pedro Munhoz is in desperate need of a win especially after his last fight  ended in a no contest due to getting eye poked by Sean O’Malley. That being almost a year ago, prior to that he was 1-4 with defeats against Aljamain Sterling, Frankie Edgar, Jose Aldo & Dominick Cruz. He takes a break from the superstars of the division here but it certainly doesn’t get any easier as Chris Gutierrez heads into this one riding an eight fight unbeaten streak. He is only getting better and coming off two knockouts last year which included a spectacular spinning backfist on Danaa Batgerel and a vicious knee which ended Frankie Edgar’s illustrious career. Gutierrez looks dangerous on the feet every time he steps in the octagon and Pedro has the power to match him. He is also incredibly durable, so I fully expect this to be a banger. All in all a great fight night card that I’m very much looking forward to.

 

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