Ilia Topuria clears the air on visibly cold reaction to Max Holloway’s knockout at UFC 300

By Curtis Calhoun - April 17, 2024

UFC featherweight champion Ilia Topuria has opened up on his talked-about cage-side reaction to Max Holloway’s UFC 300 knockout.

Ilia Topuria, Max Holloway

Holloway earned the BMF belt with one of the wildest knockouts in UFC history last Saturday at UFC 300. After being up on the judges’ scorecards in the final seconds, he lured Justin Gaethje into a last-second firefight and ended up knocking Gaethje unconscious.

Topuria, who sat cage-side with other UFC stars at UFC 300, was one of the few attendees who didn’t seem awed by Holloway’s performance. Some on social media accused Topuria of appearing scared by Holloway’s power and a potential featherweight clash.

Topuria wants to prove that Holloway not only doesn’t scare him but doesn’t present any resistance to his title reign.

Ilia Topuria squashes speculation Max Holloway’s KO rattled him

In a recent interview on The MMA Hour, Topuria dismissed claims that he appeared uncomfortable after Holloway’s knockout win.

“The UFC saved him for this moment. I asked for him before the Volkanovski fight,” Topuria said. “To be honest, I didn’t even realize that I was on [the jumbotron], I was just talking to Israel [Adesanya]…I know what’s going to happen when we share the Octagon. He’s not as good as people think he is…

“It was basically a motorcycle accident without a helmet. Just bring the same energy you brought in the last 10 seconds for the first 10 seconds [of our fight]. I know I’ll be the first one to take his lights out, I’m better than him everywhere.”

Topuria was originally expected to face Alexander Volkanovski in an immediate rematch after defeating him at UFC 298. But, Volkanovski will likely take an extended hiatus after back-to-back knockout losses.

Topuria vs. Holloway could potentially headline the UFC’s first-ever card in Spain. UFC president Dana White plans on booking an event in Spain by the end of 2024, although nothing has been announced as of this writing.

Now that Topuria has explained his reaction at UFC 300, he can silence another featherweight great and cement himself as a potentially long-reigning titleholder.

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


Ilia Topuria Max Holloway UFC UFC 300