UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway has an opportunity to be a two-weight world champion -something only Conor McGregor has done thus far – should he get past Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 223 this weekend.
But with McGregor about to be stripped of his second belt on Saturday, Holloway hopes a win over Nurmagomedov could lure the Irishman back for a rematch, according to Holloway’s manager, Brian Butler-Au.
Butler-Au discussed the idea during this week’s edition of The MMA Hour, and appears optimistic that this rematch could happen should Holloway win the second of McGregor’s relinquished belts:
“It’s been a funny situation with Max. He’s not somebody that has ever — he’s never gone after Conor like everybody else. He’s always been very aware of the fact that he’s not going to give that to Conor. He’s going to earn his way and he’s going to make Conor come to him, and that’s the way he’s been playing. That’s why you’ve never seen Max go out there and just blatantly call out Conor.”
“Conor will throw out a jab at him and Max will come back with a one-two on social media, and in my opinion, just decimate any verbal sparring that they’ve done, but that’s about the most of it for Max. From there, he’s earning his position, just like he did when he earned the titles. He didn’t leapfrog over anybody to earn the title. He legitimately cleaned out the division. There’s really nobody left for him to fight now, except for Brian Ortega. Even that fight, had Brian not pulled out that amazing win over Frankie, a lot of people would’ve said that he wasn’t ready yet. So, I mean, Max, like I said, he’s done it the methodical way.”
Holloway lost to McGregor during the Irishman’s epic featherweight run back in 2013 by decision, being the only man to not be finished by McGregor in that weight class.
Since then, the two have taken diverging paths, with McGregor moving up in weight and eventually taking on boxing legend Floyd Mayweather, and Holloway winning the featherweight title.
Do you expect to see McGregor’s interest in a rematch with Holloway peak should the Hawaiian win the lightweight strap on Saturday?