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MMA

04th Jun 2017

Max Holloway knocks out Jose Aldo to become greatest featherweight on Earth

He did what kings do

Ben Kiely

Will Chope, Andre Fili, Clay Collard, Akira Corassani, Cole Miller, Cub Swanson, Charles Oliveira, Jeremy Stephens, Ricardo Lamas, Anthony Pettis… Jose Aldo.

Since 2014, Max Holloway has amassed a win-streak longer than the number of consecutive title defences Aldo racked up during his first WEC and UFC reign that lasted nearly double that time.

Until UFC 212’s main event, only one man had defeated Aldo in the last 11 years. Holloway now joins Conor McGregor in the elite club of fighters to beat the Brazilian after he had propelled himself to ‘greatest featherweight of all time’ status.

It wasn’t a smooth road to the belt for ‘Blessed’ in Rio, but the finish could not have been more definitive.Both fighters stated cautiously. Aldo took the first round, swarming the Hawaiian with combinations and cracking him with a vicious knee. Holloway remained composed and utilised his jab, but there was no doubt that he was behind on the scorecards heading into the second.

Aldo put on a countering masterclass at the beginning of the second while Holloway was reaching with his punches. The two began trading on the feet with Aldo showing no sign of utilising his most feared weapon, those stinging leg kicks. It was quickly evolving into a fire fight, which played directly into Holloway’s strengths. He couldn’t help but celebrate that fact.

Holloway found his rhythm in the third, landing with bad intentions more frequently. A two-punch combination saw the Brazilian slump to the mat. With the smell of blood dancing around his nostrils, Holloway went to claim the throne.

He pounced on the mat, took full mount, but Aldo’s BJJ black belt came in handy as he got out of the position, but only to be smothered with ground and pound. Holloway kept raining down with hard punches and eventually carved his way back into full mount. After failing to lock in a rear-naked choke, he went back to the tried and tested mount position and kept hammering Aldo with punches until John McCarthy had no choice but to award Holloway the TKO victory a 4:13 of the third.

After repeatedly calling for the UFC to put on a show in Hawaii, Holloway just might be granted his wish after unifying the championship. Although there’s no word over who his next opponent is, it is expected that number one contender Frankie Edgar will get the call.