MONDAY NEWS DIGEST 1/8: Max Holloway vs. Frankie Edgar set for UFC 222 (w/ Heydorn’s analysis)

BY ZACK HEYDORN, MMATORCH COLUMNIST

Max Holloway (Tom Szczerbowski © USA Today Sports)

Max Holloway vs. Frankie Edgar was primed to be one of the biggest fights of 2017. Due to an injury to Edgar during the training for that fight, the bout was cancelled at UFC 218 and replaced by Holloway vs. Aldo 2. Now, Edgar is cleared to return and the long awaited featherweight championship fight will take place in Las Vegas at UFC 222.

Heydorn’s Analysis: This is major for the UFC and a fight I’m really looking forward to. First and foremost, the fight should be excellent. Edgar and Holloway’s styles contrast which will make for exciting back and forth action. In addition, with this main event the UFC will get to see just how well Holloway can draw. In his previous two fights he had UFC mainstay Jose Aldo to help carry his card. Now, the premiere star is Holloway himself and it will be important for him and his future worth to the company to show he can deliver as the single main draw. Lastly, Frankie Edgar has looked fantastic in his last two fights and earned this opportunity to fight for the title again. Presumably this will be his last shot. With all of those elements packed in to one fight, it’s sure to go down as one of the best of year.

MONDAY NEWS NOTEBOOK

Mike Perry signs to fight Max Griffin at UFC on FOX 28. In a relatively surprising turn of events, Mike Perry has said he has signed on to fight Max Griffin at UFC on FOX 28. Just three weeks ago Perry lost to Santiago Ponzinibbio. Perry made this announcement on the MMA Hour saying,“I’ll take anything, but we already got something coming.” “I can’t say a name, I don’t know if he’s signed his bout agreement, but I signed a bout agreement today. I signed one today, so we’ll see if he signs his and I’m ready to perform and it’s next month.” Perry then revealed on his Instagram account that his presumed opponent is Griffin. His full post is here:

Anderson Silva vows to return to MMA. In an Instagram post on Sunday, UFC legend Anderson Silva thanked his fans and said he isn’t retired and that he will fight again. In his statement, Silva said, “When I look at this photo, I realize how much God strengthens me by always giving me light in my walk. On a long trip, fantastic memories of the time I played in the streets of the neighborhood where I grew up in Curitiba. Everything I’ve been through, everything I’ve built with willpower, determination and great honor. I had the privilege of putting the coat of my heart team, in a way, to give a world title to him and especially to my people. I just have to thank you all for everything, I say from my heart, I love you all who are always giving me strength. Kiss! I really love you, strength and honor to all, regardless of team, color, race, religion and sexual choice, we are all brothers. Thank you, my people! You can be sure it’s not over yet. My love and my passion for the fight are here, firm and strong. The fight continues, I will stop when GOD thinks I can not do it anymore. So who is my fan, can be sure, that soon I’m back, to the joy of those who cheer for me and to the sadness of those who don’t kkkkkk kiss.”

Heydorn’s Analysis: No reference of the drug violation? I don’t buy Silva’s narrative of “everything he’s been through.” A lot of his hardships were created by him and him alone. Nobody forced him to take drugs. To be taken seriously, he needs to own that part of his career and address it.

Conor McGregor’s coach favors an MMA return. In an interview with BBC Sport, longtime McGregor coach John Kavanagh said that if it were up to him, McGregor would return to the octagon rather than pursue additional boxing matches. In the interview, Kavanagh said, “You want to know my opinion.” “I’ll be pushing very hard for MMA. The boxing was a nice detour from what we’ve done but mixed martial arts is my passion so if I have anything to do with it, he’ll be in the octagon this year.”

Heydorn’s Analysis: Hopefully Kavanagh has some pull inside McGregor’s circle because the fans want that as well. As fun and intriguing as Mayweather vs. McGregor was it needs to stand alone as a one off. McGregor has plenty to do in the UFC and he needs to make a final decision on his future before fan opinion of him sours.

Contact Zack at heydornzack@gmail.com and follow Zack on Twitter at https://twitter.com/zheydorn


NOW CHECK OUT THE PREVIOUS NEWS: WEDNESDAY NEWS DIGEST 1/3: Justin Gaethje ready to fight Kevin Lee (w/ Heydorn’s analysis)

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