Laura Sanko believes Max Holloway could make a real run in the lightweight division.
Dating back to 2014, ‘Blessed’ has looked practically unbeatable in the 145-pound weight class, with one glaring exception. Holloway has failed to score a win over reigning featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski on three separate occasions, making the likelihood of a fourth opportunity somewhat unlikely. Rather than being relegated to gatekeeper status, ‘Blessed’ could be better served by making a move to 155 pounds where he would find himself with a bevy of fresh matchups.
During an appearance on MMA on SiriusXM, Laura Sanko believes Max Holloway could be immediately competitive in the lightweight division so long as he makes the necessary adjustments.
“I think he would want to put on a little bit of size, maybe focus on a slightly different style,” Sanko said. “I don’t think the adjustments necessarily need to be huge because, when you think about it, obviously I know he didn’t get past Dustin Poirier, but that was a very competitive fight.”
How would Max Holloway do at 155lbs?
"If you're already pretty darn competitive with the number 2 guy in the division, that says to me, that you can mix it up with the top 5 of the division."@laura_sanko discusses Max's chances with @jimmysmithmma
Source: Unlocking the Cage pic.twitter.com/uijTbZIHLa
— MMA on SiriusXM (@MMAonSiriusXM) April 18, 2023
Laura Sanko Wants to See Max Holloway Take Some Time Off to Properly Prepare for a Lightweight Run
Riding a 13-fight wins streak at featherweight, Holloway made a brief pitstop at lightweight in 2019, challenging 155-pound superstar Dustin Poirier. ‘Blessed’ made no adjustments to his size or game plan and ultimately paid the price, dropping a unanimous decision to ‘The Diamond.’ Despite taking the L, Holloway was still very competitive in the contest, showing that with a few tweaks to his size and style, he could be a legitimate threat in the division.
“If you’re already pretty darn competitive with the No. 2 division, that says to me that you can mix it up in the top five of the division,” Sanko continued. “When he did that, it was sort of one of those moments like, ‘Hey, I’m gonna try to do champ-champ.’ I don’t think he focused at all on putting any weight on.
“I don’t think he focused at all on slightly tweaking his style for the different weight class, but if he were to do it intentionally, with a little bit more preparation, I think that might be enough to get past some of those guys. He’d be a factor in that top five for sure.”
Max Holloway got back into the win column on Saturday night, besting Arnold Alllen in a five-round war at UFC Kansas City. With Alexander Volkanovski currently tied up at the top of the featherweight division, ‘Blessed’ expressed an interest in facing fan-favorite The Korean Zombie during his post-fight press conference appearance.
The two men have never shared the Octagon with one another.