EXCLUSIVE | With Hawaii Behind Him, Max Holloway Ready To End The McGregor Hype This Saturday | BJPenn.com Radio
| This Saturday (August 17th) will mark the launch of the new FOX Sport 1 TV Network and kicking off the celebration will be UFC Fight Night 26: Sonnen vs. Shogun in Boston, Massachusetts. One of the fights on the night’s jam-packed card will be a featherweight bout between Hawaiian scrapper Max Holloway and Irish sensation Conor McGregor. BJPenn.com Radio was lucky enough to catch up with Max leading up to fight night and he discussed many of the topics surrounding this fight, his training, and what the fans can expect come fight night. Here are some of the highlights from BJPenn.com Radio’s interview with UFC featherweight, Max Holloway:
He was first asked what he thought was going to be the difference in the fight come August 17th. Both men share a striking style of fighting and Holloway was asked to touch on how he felt the two are going to matchup.
“I feel like I’m the faster, lankier guy,” he said, “so my stick-and-move is obviously going to come into play. I would love to leave Fight Night with some kind of bonus or two bonuses, who know? I just want to go out there, fight my heart out and get the victory.”
Holloway’s opponent at UFC Fight Night 26, Conor McGregor, is riding a ton of hype heading into this fight. Holloway was asked if he felt that a win over McGregor would transfer that hype and ranking to himself and what he felt he deserved, opponent-wise, if he can indeed pull out the win on Saturday night. He replied,
“We’ll see when the time comes. I’m not in a rush. I’m 21, I have a lot of time and, I’ll fight whoever. If the hype don’t go to me after this fight that’s fine with me. I’m going to live and I just want to stay active. If that’s one thing I could ask from the UFC I’d love to fight three to four times a year if possible. Just stay active and keep putting on shows for the fans, and like I said, I want to earn my stripes and I want to be respected in the sport and that’s just what I plan on doing. Whoever the UFC puts in front of me, I want to fight. To be the best you have to beat the best and I’ll fight anyone anytime and just stay ready.”
Max was then asked to comment on McGregor’s style and what kind of matchup he felt the Irishman was going to bring into the cage. Holloway explained,
“I really think he’s a well-rounded guy, you know, and he might be the best well-rounded fighter I’ve fought but who knows? I have to wait to get in there and we see if I’m the best fighter he fights Saturday night, so, I don’t really like saying too much or whatever so all I’m gonna say is he’s a super good, well-rounded fighter. He’s got striking, he’s got wrestling, and I think he’s got some submission wins so I think he’s good all around.”
Holloway was then asked to give his preference on how he would like to score the win, if he had a choice. He replied, “I want a stoppage and I think I’m due for a stoppage, so I want to stop this guy. Get in there, get out, and that would be a perfect way to kind of put an end to this guy, you know?”
He was also asked to comment on what he felt the benefits of a shortened fight camp can be, as opposed to grind your body out for an extended amount of time prior to a fight. He explained that with a shortened camp, “You don’t have the mental taxing on you. You don’t have the extra time to keep over-thinking stuff or overdoing stuff so I just think that it has its pros and it has its cons.”
Max is one of two active Hawaiian fighters currently in the UFC and he was asked to comment on what kind of pride or pressure he felt, if any, in fighting for the spirit of the Hawaiian people. He stated, “When I fight I got like the whole Hawaii behind me, you know? And it feels great to bring a win back home, back to the Hawaiian Islands and try to get Hawaii out there again and put Hawaii on the map. It’s just a great feeling.”
Holloway is taking on McGregor, who is coming into the fight repping his Irish fighting heritage. Max was asked if he felt like it was going to be a battle between fighting cultures come Saturday night in Boston. He replied, “I think Hawaii is like a fighting culture, you know? Whenever you talk to a Hawaiian and stuff they always talk about fighting for their land and stuff, so I definitely think Hawaii is a fighting culture.”
The conversation then shifted to Holloway’s training. He explained that he trains entirely in Hawaii for his camps but admitted that branching out to the mainland to train with other big camps may be in his future. He explained, “I definitely do think there are perks to going out and train with other people and in the near future I might even do that. I might take my training camp someplace else for the first couple weeks and then come back home and finish the training camp at home.”
He was then asked how he prepared for McGregor and if he found training partners with the same style as McGregor.
“Conor McGregor is special. He’s not like every other fighter,” he replied.“He fights super different than your normal MMA fighter and it was kind of hard getting partners but I think we did a good enough job.”
To close the interview Holloway was asked if he was coming into this fight with a chip on his shoulder because McGregor was carrying all the hype and getting all the media attention.
“No chip at all. Yeah, he’s getting all the attention,” he said, “but that guy has to fight someone and he’s fighting me.”
We would like to thank Max for joining our boys over at BJPenn.com Radio and taking the time out of his fight-week preparations to discuss his upcoming fight with Conor McGregor at UFC Fight Night 26 on August 17th. We wish Max the best of luck in that fight and we look forward to seeing him scrap with the Irishman in Boston.