The previous featherweight king is on the lookout for a path again to the crown. Max Holloway will face Calvin Kattar in a pivotal featherweight bout in the primary occasion of UFC Struggle Evening on Saturday in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. It’s the first UFC present of the 12 months, and the primary card will air on ABC, the house for boxing over a number of many years.
The winner of this combat could possibly be subsequent in line for a title alternative. ESPN has Holloway ranked No. 2 and Kattar at No. 6 within the featherweight division.
Holloway (21-6) has dropped two in a row to present champion Alexander Volkanovski. Each bouts have been very shut and plenty of thought Holloway received the second at UFC 251 in July. Holloway, 29, is probably the most adorned featherweight in UFC historical past. He held a 145-pound title within the UFC from 2016 to 2019. The Hawai’i native has probably the most wins (16), probably the most KO/TKO wins (8) and probably the most stoppage victories (10) in UFC featherweight historical past.
Kattar (22-4) has received two in a row and 4 of his previous 5. The Massachusetts native has 4 finishes in six UFC wins. Kattar, 32, is coming off a unanimous-decision win over Dan Ige final July.
Within the co-main occasion, two of probably the most thrilling fighters in UFC welterweight historical past — Carlos Condit and Matt Brown — sq. off. Condit (31-13), a former UFC interim welterweight champion, snapped a five-fight shedding streak in his most up-to-date bout, a win over Court McGee. Brown (22-17) had a two-fight profitable streak snapped in his newest bout in opposition to Miguel Baeza.
Additionally on the cardboard, welterweight contender Santiago Ponzinibbio returns after greater than two years away due to sickness to face Li Jingliang, and knockout artist Joaquin Buckley meets Alessio Di Chirico in a welterweight bout.
A powerful card will get an additional enhance of adrenaline as followers will probably be allowed within the Etihad Enviornment. The constructing can seat 18,000, however solely 2,000 followers will probably be allowed in.
— UFC (@ufc) January 16, 2021
Struggle in progress:
Recap to return.
For 3 rounds, Melo stalked ahead throwing energy punches. She ate some jabs within the course of, and never each large hook landed, however sufficient did for her to earn the win.
Melo defeated Moras by way of unanimous choice (30-27, 29-28, 29-28) in a ladies’s bantamweight bout, the primary UFC ladies’s bout of 2021.
Essentially the most important strike got here within the second spherical. Melo whipped a mixture that culminated in a shovel left hook, cracking Moras within the nostril. Moras’ mouthpiece fell out after the punch landed and her nostril ended up bloodied. Moras had some success together with her jab and leg kicks. However there was little doubt that Melo was touchdown the more durable punches all through the combat.
Melo, 32, had a three-fight shedding streak snapped. The Brazilian picked up her first UFC win. Moras, a 32-year-old Canada native, has now dropped two straight and 5 of her final six.
Lingo had not fought since his first defeat final February. However he didn’t take lengthy to get again on observe, dropping Kilburn throughout the first 30 seconds. However his work was not but achieved.
After Kilburn climbed proper again to his toes, Lingo proceeded to pepper him with sharp jabs, left hooks and extra proper arms on his method to securing the nod on all three scorecards.
It is Buffer vs. Fly at #UFCFightIsland7 😂
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) January 16, 2021
Two judges scored the combat 30-26 and different had it 30-27.
Kilburn, in his first combat since 2019, didn’t make it simple, regardless of the lopsided scorecards. The 25-year-old from Clarksville, Tennessee, tried takedown after takedown, and because the combat wore on, he did look like the brisker competitor. However he could not get out of the way in which of Lingo’s punches, and suffered his second straight loss.
Lingo, 26 and combating out of Dallas, had not competed since final February’s unanimous choice loss to Youssef Zalal.
Nonetheless to return:
Males’s featherweight: Max Holloway (21-6, 17-6 UFC, -160) vs. Calvin Kattar (22-4, 6-2 UFC, +135)
Welterweight: Carlos Condit (31-13, 8-9 UFC, -170) vs. Matt Brown (24-17, 15-11 UFC, +145)
Welterweight: Santiago Ponzinibbio (28-3, 9-2 UFC, -310) vs. Li Jingliang (17-6, 9-4 UFC, +250)
Middleweight: Joaquin Buckley (12-3, 2-1 UFC, -300) vs. Alessio Di Chirico (12-5, 3-5 UFC, +240)
Middleweight: Punahele Soriano (7-0, 1-0 UFC, +135) vs. Dusko Todorovic (10-0, 1-0 UFC, -160)
Ladies’s bantamweight: Wu Yanan (11-3, 1-2 UFC, -115) vs. Joselyne Edwards (9-2, 0-0 UFC, -105)