This Saturday night, in the main event of UFC 236, two prolific strikers will go at it. Max “Blessed” Holloway, current UFC Featherweight champion, will get his first shot at the interim Lightweight belt. Max is no stranger to championship fights, having competed in 5 career title fights in total.
Dustin “The Diamond” Poirier will compete in the first title fight of his career. Will the big fight experience of Max prevail? Or will the long road for Dustin prove that this is the right time for the Louisiana native to shine. Holloway vs Poirier is previewed below!
The Deciding Factor
Dan Hardy broke this fight down perfectly on Inside The Octagon. Something interesting which he highlighted was the amount of strikes typically thrown and landed by both fighters round by round. What was interesting about Holloway is that he throws more each round and also lands more! Defying the logic of a tiring fighter throwing and landing less as the fight goes on.
Dustin throws fewer and fewer punches as the fight goes on. But, he picks his shots well as on average, his strikes that land increase as the rounds go on.
History shows that both of these fighters are most successful in the striking realm. This is how I see the fight playing out. But, competent strikers have failed to keep the flurry of Holloway at bay. Whilst Poirier has great, technical striking it just seems like Max is on another level. Perhaps the only way to stop Max is to grapple with him. As Max likes to keep in close range to land his peppering shots, this could be a perfect way for Dustin to slip in and out grapple the Hawaiian.
A lot of people are overlooking Dustin. But you can bet Max won’t be. Max has already lost to Dustin and will appreciate how good he is. Holloway has something to prove with a chance at making history. He could join a small handful of people who achieved the feet of becoming a two division champion. Whilst both fighters have matured like fine wine, Holloway has that “IT” factor. Something special which Dustin doesn’t quite posses.
In Max’s previous fight with Brian Ortega, he was described as the best Featherweight of all time. Ultimately I think his volume punching will be too much for Dustin. I don’t see Poirier having an answer to the oncoming onslaught. Max will be heavier than he’s used to being going into this fight. You could strongly suggest that this typically results in more powerful punches. With this in mind, we think Max is capable of a finish.
Prediction: Holloway by knockout.
Where can I watch this fight?
This fight will be live on BT Sport in the UK. In America, ESPN+ will exclusively have the PPV. For other countries, please check your local listings.
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