The head games have already started and Max Holloway lets Jose Aldo know he doesn’t call the shots.
Holloway put the MMA world on notice at UFC 206 in Toronto – if they hadn’t noticed already. He picked up the interim featherweight belt after dominating former lightweight champion Anthony Pettis. Following his third round TKO of the former champ Holloway took to the mic and immediately called out Jose Aldo. Asking fans to help him find Aldo through the hashtag #WhereIsJoseWaldo.
Aldo responded Monday, saying the fight was already booked and the two would meet at UFC 208 in Brooklyn, New York. Holloway however, clearly isn’t going to jump because Aldo said so. He was a guest on the MMA Hour this week with Ariel Helwani and said he has some personal obligations to take care of and would like to sit down with the UFC and hash out a few things before he makes anything official.
“We got Jose Waldo over here saying Feb. 11. I don’t know,” Holloway said. “He wants to retire. He wants to be a soccer player. Now he’s a f*cking matchmaker. Like I said before, the UFC needs to send his ass to the Cleveland Clinic and check his brain out. They’ve been sending me a bunch of times and my brain seems fine. I ain’t got no problems talking with you guys and doing all this sh*t.
“I said it before, I don’t want to give up my Christmas, I don’t want to give up my son’s birthday on Jan. 4, all for Feb. 11 and the guy doesn’t show up. The hashtag ‘where’s Jose Waldo?’ has been working because he’s popping off here and there, but we’ve got to keep on turning the page and keep finding him, so we’ll see what happens.”
Holloway has emerged as a huge star in the featherweight division. Over the past year he was kind of placed on the back burner, while Conor McGregor, Jose Aldo and Frankie Edgar dominated the headlines. However, while they were dominating the headlines Holloway was dominating everything else. He quietly racked up wins – now at 10 in a row – and put his name all over the record books for most fights, wins, stoppages and knockouts in the divisions history.
What is even scarier is at only 25 years old, Holloway is just hitting his stride, just beginning to peak and he knows it. He knows this is just the beginning for him.
“I’m growing,” Holloway said. “I’m only 25. I’m learning, man. And I told you guys, Dec. 10, a star is going to be born. And I think we’re taking the right steps to start being born. I said it before and I’ll say it again, it’s time to flip the channel, man. Come over to CineMax. It’s good, Hawaii’s warm, hashtag UFC Hawaii, and Team Blessed MMA’s got a lot of seats on the train. We’re going to ride this train until the wheels fall off.
“If you don’t believe in yourself and you’re over here trying to beg for other people, ‘man, you’ve got to believe in me’ — nah, that ain’t shit,” Holloway continued. “Because if you’re trying to depend on someone else, you’re not going to get shit done. You’ve got to believe in your damn self and do the damn thing, so I’m a big believer in self-belief, man, and going out there and working hard and sacrificing. You’ve got to ooze it. You’ve got to have this confidence, and I knew I had it.”
Holloway just continues to knock his goals down one at a time. He revealed that as a youngster his desire was to fight Pettis and Aldo and conveniently enough he is going to get them back-to-back. Holloway was clear his isn’t looking for a money fight, he’s looking to be the money fight.
“I did an interview for MMA Hawaii when I was growing up, and I told them: the guys I want to fight are Anthony Pettis and Jose Aldo,” Holloway said. “And look, two of these guys, I got to fight them back-to-back now. I just got to fight Pettis. Now I get the chance to fight Aldo. So I want to fight Aldo.
“Too many guys are over here begging for people and trying to chase people to fight, this and that, begging for money fights. You become your own damn money fight. That’s what I plan on trying to do. Like I said, I’m trying to become my own star. I’m trying to make my own money. I don’t want a guy to be like, ‘look at this, you made this money because of me.’ No motherf*cker, I made this money because of my damn self. I’m working hard. I’m putting in the hard work. I’m sacrificing. I ain’t asking for no handouts. I’m going to earn everything I’m given.”