UFC 226 has taken a massive blow just days from the event in Las Vegas as news emerges that co-main event star Max Holloway has been forced to pull out of his latest featherweight title fight against Brian Ortega.
Holloway’s team have since revealed that Holloway has been suffering from concussion-like symptoms that have been affecting him for several days now and have left them with no choice but to keep the Hawaiian star from competing on Saturday night.
“Max’s team and UFC staff noticed Max was not normal since late last week,” Holloway’s management team told MMAJunkie in a statement. “This became obvious to many watching his interviews and public appearances the past few days.
He was showing concussion like symptoms before he even started his weight cut and was rushed to the ER on Monday where they admitted him over night. Initial scans seemed okay and he was released Tuesday afternoon but symptoms still continued.
Max fought with his team to continue with the fight. He showed some improvement over the next day but was still showing obvious symptoms. After open workouts he crashed and was very hard to wake up, when he did he had flashing vision and slurred speech.
He is now back in the ER for further tests.”
It remains to be seen whether the UFC will now attempt to find a last-minute opponent for Ortega to keep him on the card.
If not then UFC 226 would proceed with the main event superfight between heavyweight champ Stipe Miocic and light-heavyweight titleholder Daniel Cormier in the main event, while another heavyweight encounter between Francis Ngannou and Derrick Lewis would likely move up to co-main event status.