At UFC 223, Holloway made an offer to replace Tony Ferguson when Ferguson did not have a date with Khabib Nurmagomedov during fight week. Despite his best efforts, the New York State Athletic Commission deemed the weight cut too extreme and barred Holloway from a fight, but not before a heated exchange with Nurmagomedov at the pre-fight press conference. .
UFC MONTHLY REPORT | JANUARY 2023
Holloway would finally get his shot at double champion status when he fought Poirier in a rematch of their 2012 bout – Holloway’s promotional debut. This time, Holloway was on a 13-fight five-fight winning streak and a betting favorite after dismantling Brian Ortega at UFC 231 a few months prior. However, after a back-and-forth affair, the judges gave Poirier the go-ahead, although both fighters got a Fight of the Night bonus.
Although sometimes a fighter bidding for a second belt might seem bold or at the behest of challengers in his own division, this move to 155 seems like the natural course of action for Volkanovski. He is currently on a 22-fight winning streak spanning nearly a decade, with wins over Aldo, Ortega, Chad Mendes and Holloway (three times) on his resume. After his Fighter of the Year campaign in 2022, it made sense for him to try his hand at the lightweight division.