Max Holloway vs. Frankie Edgar is on the verge of collapsing for the second time in just a few months.
The pair were originally scheduled to meet for Holloway’s featherweight title at UFC 218 in December but Edgar was forced to withdraw a month in advance when he suffered a broken orbital bone in training. Holloway remained on the card and made his first successful defence of the belt by pummeling former champion Jose Aldo to a third-round stoppage defeat for the second straight fight.
Holloway vs. Edgar was subsequently rebooked for UFC 222 in March but injury seems to have scuppered the bout once again.
According to a report from ESPN journalist Brett Okamoto, Holloway is the injured party on this occasion and the Hawaiian will be unable to compete in the Las Vegas show’s main event as scheduled.
However, as of yet, no official announcement has been made.
This is a huge blow to the UFC 222 card, which is seriously lacking in star power. According to Okamoto, the UFC is currently exploring other options for the show’s headline slot.
Holloway won the interim featherweight title by stopping former lightweight champion Anthony Pettis in December of 2016 and became the undisputed 145-pound king when he finished Aldo at UFC 212 last June. The second win over Aldo brought Holloway’s winning streak to twelve. Eleven of those victories came at featherweight, while the other came in a catchweight bout.
Holloway has never before been forced to pull out of a fight in the UFC through injury.
Edgar, a former UFC lightweight champ, lost a five-round decision to Jose Aldo in an interim featherweight title fight with Jose Aldo at UFC 200 in the summer of 2016 but he rebounded with consecutive wins, over Jeremy Stephens and Yair Rodriguez. He hasn’t fought since May of 2017.