Fighting

Final Thoughts on UFC on ABC: Holloway vs. Kattar

The UFC made their primetime debut on ABC on Saturday. The main card marked the first time an MMA event was on ABC, and it delivered in every aspect.

Here are some thoughts on the fight card.

• The No. 1 ranked featherweight Max Holloway put an absolute beat down on No. 6 ranked Calvin Kattar. It was a complete masterclass. Holloway landed 445 significant strikes, which set the single-fight record. He also threw 744 significant strikes, another record. Holloway was on a completely different level. Many fight analysts and fans believe Holloway beat Alexander Volkanovski in their rematch for the title last summer. We can believe it all we want; the result will remain the same, unfortunately.
The next time we see Holloway should be in the trilogy if Volkanovski gets past Brian Ortega, that fight goes down in April. Holloway keeps getting better, which is wild. He has 28 fights under his belt and still only 29 years old. Oh, and he threw a no-look punch that landed and then slipped a punch while not looking. INCREDIBLE.

• Kattar, on the other hand, should take some time off after that beating. In all honesty, the beating that he took might have lasting repercussions for the rest of his career. We have seen it before. I don’t want to see him back in the octagon until August at the earliest.

• We finally got Carlos Condit vs. Matt Brown! The fight was supposed to go down in 2013 and again in 2018, but injuries stopped it from happening. I am happy to report that the wait was worth it. Condit and Brown went to war, as we expected. Both men are UFC veterans and future Hall of Famers. If I had my way, I would like to see them both retire but knowing them; it’s not going to happen. Whatever.

• Li Jingliang spoiled the return of Santiago Ponzinibbio, who hadn’t fought since 2018. Jingliang will be in the welterweight rankings come Tuesday, and it is much deserved. Ponzinibbio will rebound from this loss, and I feel sorry for whichever fighter gets to fight him next.

• Alessio Di Chirico put an end to the Joaquin Buckley hype train by knocking him out in the first round. I’m annoyed at myself for not picking Di Chirico to win. While he was on a three-fight losing streak, he lost to very good competition and wasn’t finished. Di Chirico saved his job and gave fight fans a great knockout.

• Someone’s 0 had to go in the Punahele Soriano vs. Duško Todorović matchup. Soriano kept his 0 and took his opponents. It was a great way to kick off the main card and a great way for casual MMA fans who were tuning in for the first time on ABC. Soriano’s ceiling is pretty high, and he’s getting better. He didn’t fight all of 2020 due to concussion issues, so it was great to see him back in action.

Some other quick thoughts:

• Joselyne Edwards is an excellent addition to the women’s bantamweight division. She looked excellent.

• Carlos Felipe vs. Justin Tafa was a great heavyweight fight. Tafa got robbed of a win.

• You can skip Vanessa Melo vs. Sarah Moras. It sucked.

• Austin Lingo is a beast.

• Ramazan Emeev is a problem for the welterweight division.

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