UFC interim featherweight champion Max Holloway is currently gearing up for the biggest fight of his career, a featherweight showdown with undisputed champion Jose Aldo. The fight, which will take place on June 3rd, will also take place in Brazil, making Aldo the obvious hometown favorite.
Ahead of the fight, the interim champion knows that fighting the champion in his home country makes him the bad guy, a role he is comfortable embracing.
He spoke to media members in Brazil:
“It would be stupid to think I wouldn’t be the bad guy coming to the fight,” Holloway said at a recent press conference in Rio de Janeiro. “I’m the bad guy, and I’m embracing the role. He’s got to do his job. Show up June 3, and let’s get it done.”
“Superheroes got dark sides now,” Holloway said. “Everyone wants drama. Everyone is living for drama. You know? You either grow with this sport or you get left behind. It’s sad, but it is what it is. You gotta keep up with this sport. If you want to be a superstar and make a lot of money, this is what you do. Some people take it a little overboard, but its always fun poking at people and seeing how they react. It’s good and bad for the sport, but us athletes, we’re trying to get our money and trying to get paid.”
Max Holloway is certainly doing his best to fulfill the role of ‘bad guy’. During a recent press conference, ‘Blessed’ brought the champion a soccer ball in reference to Aldo stating prior to the fight being booked that he would like to pursue professional soccer after his MMA career is over.
“I came with a soccer ball because the old boy said he wants to go ahead and play soccer after he’s done fighting,” Holloway said. “Us Hawaiians, we like to give gifts, and this gift is for him. He’s going into retirement. It’s right here. He can have the ball, and we can get this fight going.”
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/14/2017.