Max Holloway doesn’t know why Khabib Nurmagomedov doubts his desire to compete.
Giving his prediction for Holloway’s trilogy fight with featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski in the co-main event of UFC 276 on Saturday, Nurmagomedov said he thought Volkanovski had “more fire” than Holloway (23-6 MMA, 19-6 UFC) and picked him to retain.
Since losing to Volkanovski (24-1 MMA, 11-0 UFC) in back-to-back title fights, Holloway has bounced back with striking clinics against top contenders Calvin Kattar and Yair Rodriguez, so he’s surprised at the opinion of Nurmagomedov.
“Not at all, you know? I mean, he’s probably talking about Volkanovski having more fire because he has a cooking show or something,” Holloway told Yahoo! Sports. “Maybe the resemblance to the fire there, but other than that, I don’t know, man. I don’t know. Khabib is Khabib. He’s going to say what he’s going to say, and I don’t have no idea what he’s talking about, you know? I’m here, and I always do, so I can’t wait. There’s a lot of people saying things, and we have to figure out if it’s all true, if I I’m still on fire Saturday night.
Holloway’s two decision losses to Volkanovski were hotly contested, with ‘Blessed’ adamantly claiming he won the rematch. He will have the opportunity to reclaim his belt at UFC 276 and is brimming with confidence ahead of their trilogy.
“I’m excited for the challenge,” Holloway said. ” I can not wait to go there. Tune in Saturday, you don’t want to miss this. It’s going to be amazing, it’s going to be great, and I feel great. I can’t put into words, but when you have a feeling about something, you have a feeling, and I’m ready to show it.
UFC 276 takes place Saturday at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The main card airs on pay-per-view after preliminaries on ABC/ESPN and early prelims on ESPN+.