Brian Ortega Addresses Decision To Not Fight At UFC 226

Photo by Stephen R. Sylvanie - USA TODAY Sports

Brian Ortega has opened up on why he decided to not fight a replacement opponent at UFC 226.

Ortega was originally slated to challenge Max Holloway for the featherweight title in the co-main event of this past weekend’s UFC 226 pay-per-view event at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

However, Holloway had to pull out of the fight after he had been experiencing concussion-like symptoms and was taken to a hospital.

There was some talk about having Ortega fight a replacement opponent. UFC President Dana White went as far as stating during the pre-fight press conference last week that the UFC attempted to get Jeremy Stephens to fill-in on short notice and fight Ortega.

However, Ortega turned down the fight and decided to wait for Holloway to get healthy enough in order to make this fight happen. Some criticized Ortega for this decision while others can understand his reasoning behind it.

If you recall, in his last fight, Ortega stepped in for Holloway to fight Frankie Edgar on short-notice a few months ago.

If Edgar had declined to take this fight then he would’ve been fighting for the title but instead, he lost to Ortega and his position for a title fight.

Ortega took to his official Instagram account over the weekend to open up on why he decided to decline a replacement fight and wait for Holloway to defend his featherweight title. The #1 contender wrote the following:

“I’m a Businessman, a company man, but I’m no yes man. Watching the fights last night knowing I could have been performing for all of you truly took a toll on me. I stand by my decision.

Thank you to all of you who showed up to support and respected my decision. For those of you who don’t agree with me I completely understand and promise to give you guys the show of your life when I fight for the title. #tcity.”