UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway has been Pulled out of his title defense bout at UFC 226 PPV event against undefeated Brian Ortega, scheduled for this Saturday, July 7 from inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
ESPN first reported the news on Wednesday night. Holloway was hospitalized on Monday night with concussion-like symptoms and released the next day. ‘Blessed’ felt better on Tuesday and said to his team that he would stay in the card, but his symptoms got worse on Wednesday, decided he can’t compete against Brian Ortega in the co-main event.
Max Holloway’s team released the statement on the matter. (Via MMAJunkie)
“Max’s team and UFC staff noticed Max was not normal since late last week. This became obvious to many watching his interviews and public appearances the past few days.
“He was showing concussion-like symptoms before he even started his weight cut and was rushed to the ER on Monday where they admitted him overnight. Initial scans seemed okay, and he was released Tuesday afternoon, but symptoms still continued.
“Max fought with his team to continue with the fight. He showed some improvement over the next day but was still showing obvious symptoms. After open workouts, he crashed and was very hard to wake up. When he did, he had flashing vision and slurred speech.
“He is now back in the ER for further tests.”
This situation marked the third time Holloway pulled out from the fight. ‘Blessed’ was out of UFC 222 title defense against Frankie Edgar due to injury. Then he took a short-notice bout against Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 223, but Holloway pulled by The New York State Athletic Commission due to weight issues and declared him medically unfit to fight.
Holloway arrived at UFC 226 open workout on Tuesday, after spending some time in hitting the pad, Max seems low in energy, on being asked he trick the question.
“I feel great. I felt the energy from the crowd and stuff. It was crazy,” Holloway said at the time. “I was feeding off of them. It was super crazy. We were just hitting mitts, you know. It’s a show. … Some of these fans, they’re crazy here. They love me here. Like I said, this is like the ninth island of Hawaii. This is perfect.”
No word from promotion yet if Brian Ortega will stay on the card or they will attempt to find him a replacement.