Tonight, in the main event of Toronto’s UFC 206 pay-per view card, streaking featherweight contender Max Holloway will square off against former UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis in a highly anticipated showdown between two of the best strikers in the featherweight division.
For Holloway, the fight will be for the interim featherweight title, and give him the chance to not only extend his win streak to 10, but also secure a fight with featherweight champ Jose Aldo. For Pettis however, coming in three pounds over the featherweight limit of 145 pounds meant that he will no longer be able to capture the interim featherweight belt tonight with a win over Holloway.
While the fight has fight fans torn, MMA legend Dan Henderson broke the fight down in an editorial piece for Champions.co:
“If ever there was a fight where the guys were so stylistically well-matched for each other, I’d be hard-pressed to find it. These two are guaranteed to put out an action-packed barn-burner the likes of which we won’t forget anytime soon.
You’ve got the lightning quick, flashy Pettis, who has the unique ability to size up everything in the cage at a glance. Think of the Six-Million Dollar Man’s bionic eye surveying everything through the crosshairs. He can find openings and capitalize on them in the blink of an eye.
Then you’ve got the evolving technical machine that is Max Holloway. He’s got speed, but he’s not quite as fast as Pettis. His patience and excellent use of that long, rangy body belies the fact that he’s only been in the sport for six years.”
While Pettis is coming into the fight on a win in his featherweight debut earlier this year, which snapped a 3-fight skid that saw him lose the lightweight title, Holloway has been tearing through the featherweight division, winning 9 straight fights.
Understandably so, Henderson admits that this is a tough fight to call:
“Overall, this is a really tough pick to make. These guys match up so well with each other, and each have their advantages. I guess if I had to lean in any direction, I’d lean, ever so slightly, with Holloway.”