UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway might be moving up to 155-lb to lock horns with top contender Tony Ferguson for the interim title.
“Blessed” posted a cryptic tweet earlier this week, providing a hint on this potential match-up, and it looks like the pair is really heading to the April fight card.
Chris Taylor of BJPenn.com reported on Thursday that officials are currently working on an interim title bout featuring Holloway and Ferguson, which is expected to go down at UFC 236 this April.
I was just told from sources (the same that were involved in my pinned tweet) that an interim lightweight title fight between Max Holloway and Tony Ferguson is “being worked on” by officials for #UFC236 🔥
— Chris Taylor (@CTaylor_96) February 20, 2019
With reigning lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov likely to sit out for a year, the UFC may have found its alternative as it is reportedly working for an interim title fight, which will star “Blessed” and “El Cucuy.”
If it becomes official, it would be the second interim title fight at UFC 236 card as Israel Adesanya and Kelvin Gastelum have been booked for this event in April.
The featherweight kingpin returned to actions last December, scoring an emphatic victory over Brian Ortega at UFC 231 to solidify his status as one of the greatest, if not the greatest, featherweights of all-time.
Holloway’s textbook striking was in full display and proved to be too much for his challenger, with the doctors deciding to call the fight off after the fourth round. It was the second successful title-defense for Holloway and his 13th straight win since losing to Conor McGregor in 2013.
This impressive streak includes victories over Jose Aldo (twice), Cub Swanson, Anthony Pettis, Jeremy Stephens, and many others.
He now holds the distinction as the fighter with the most significant strikes landed in UFC history with 1627, surpassing Michael Bisping’s record of 1,567 and Frankie Edgar’s 1,463. He also delivered the most number of significant strikes in a single round in this bout at 134 in just the fourth round alone.
Earlier this week, “Blessed” hinted on this potential showdown with Ferguson, uploading an edited photo of the UFC 236 Wikipedia page.
Tony Ferguson is the type of guy to copy my back tattoo then tell me I've just been blessed pic.twitter.com/1aDZgHNMJH
— Max Holloway (@BlessedMMA) February 15, 2019
Ferguson, meanwhile, holds the longest winning streak in the lightweight division with 11. This includes wins against the likes of Pettis, Rafael Dos Anjos, Edson Barboza, and Lando Vannata. His most recent victory was against “Showtime” in a bloody encounter at UFC 229, which also earned the Fight of The Night honours.
If the Holloway fight comes to fruition, it will be his second interim title fight, following his clash with Kevin Lee in October 2017 for the interim lightweight belt. He was scheduled to square off with Nurmagomedov for the unification bout, but he pulled out of the fight due to an injury.
UFC 236 is scheduled on April 13, but the venue is still not yet confirmed. Also expected to take place is Adesanya vs. Gastelum, who will be fighting for the interim middleweight title as current champion Robert Whittaker is recovering from health issues.
Who do you think will win the interim lightweight title? This is going to be a good fight. April 13 cannot come soon enough.
(Featured Image Source: Instagram/Tony Ferguson and Max Holloway)