By: King Eddie
The Weigh-Ins are finished, so Max Holloway and his opponent, Akira Corassani, will now refuel and prepare for war. It's no secret that our Hawaii born Holloway is a favorite going into this bout, but the implications of a key win in Sweden may be escaping most casual fans. If "Blessed" can wrangle a dominant win or finish, this will mean much bigger things for the future of his career. A win in Sweden against a hometown TUF contestant veteran like Corassani, may finally allow Holloway to be known for more than just stepping in short notice.
Though this bout is yet another example of Max's "Company Man" status as a replacement fighter, it also breathes life into the notion that he is a fighter's fighter. There is no man, no venue, no shortness of notice that will halt the 22 year old prospect on his quest to the title. Though there have been a few roadblocks here and there, Max has done nothing if not closely examine his game, and tighten the loose ends.
What can be said about Max that isn't being spewed in the mainstream media? There isn't much. He's FINALLY being seen by the mainstream media as something he's truly been since his debut, which is a true contender. A long term contender. He's 22 years old and already walking into his 10th fight with the promotion. He's become a showstopper on any card, and a fan favorite no matter the opponent. Finally cracking into Co-Main Event status, I think it's safe to say that this is a sign of the inevitable appreciation that our Westside scrapper has deserved all along.
The most interesting thing that stands out in my mind, as the praise and attention finally rushes in for Holloway, is the fact that he was not always well received. Even here in Hawaii. But instead of letting the words and actions of others, dictate his career. Max put his head down, let his hands fly, and forged a legacy for himself on and off of the islands. He's transitioned from local fighter to global fan favorite. From local dreamer, to dream catcher. More importantly, he's grown from a kid stereotyped on the West Side of O'ahu, into a man who not only breaks stereotypes, but inspires the youth of his hometown to do the same.
When Max enters the octagon tomorrow, he will already claim victory with or without the win. But as we certainly have all the faith in the world in Max, we know he'll get the win as well. Finally setting himself off on the path he was destined to blaze in the UFC's elite division.