UFC interim champ Max Holloway: ‘Look, idiots, if I didn’t respect’ Jose Aldo, I wouldn’t be here
RIO DE JANEIRO – As Max Holloway has torn through the UFC featherweight division, going on a 10-fight win streak to become interim champion, a shift in attitude has taken place.
Holloway has upped his trash-talk game, so much so that he’s caught flak from his grandma for it.
But when it comes to champion Jose Aldo (26-2 MMA, 8-1 UFC), his opponent at UFC 212, Holloway (17-3 MMA, 12-2 UFC) would like to make one thing clear: Trash-talk though it may be, everything he’s said about Aldo – especially bringing up the 13-second loss to Conor McGregor – is based in truth.
“At the end of the day, I respect him,” Holloway said today ahead of Saturday’s pay-per-view headliner to unify the featherweight title. “Everybody’s like, ‘Oh, you know you’ve got to respect him.’ Look, idiots, if I didn’t respect him, I would have not been here. At the end of the day, you’ve got to respect. But when I go in there, he’s trying to take my head off. …
“We’re getting into a fight. We’re fighting, guys. What are you talking about? What am I supposed to be? All goody two-shoes and be like, ‘Oh, yeah, he’s amazing.’ No. He’s great. His run, his era, was great. But it’s time for the ‘Blessed’ era now. Out with the old, in with the new.”
As Holloway has climbed the ranks to reach this most important fight of his career, it’s not lost on him just how long Aldo has ruled the featherweight division to become one of the all-time greats of the sport. And so all Holloway wants is for Aldo to be at his best so there is no doubt about who the new king is.
“At the end of the day, I want to just dominate,” Holloway said. “I don’t want 13-second Aldo; I don’t want that Aldo. I want the best damn Aldo, so when he shows up, and I dominate, there are no excuses.”
Watch the video above to hear more of our interview with Holloway.