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UFC 218 fight card primer: Max Holloway vs. Jose Aldo

UFC 218 is headlined by a Featherweight title rematch when Max Holloway again squares off with Jose Aldo.

Saturday night, UFC 218 is headlined by a Featherweight title fight as UFC champion Max Holloway (18-3 MMA; 14-3 UFC) looks to make his first title defense against Jose Aldo (26-3 MMA; 8-2 UFC). The UFC rankings have Aldo as not only the #1 contender, but also #14 on the pound for pound list, with the champion above him at #4. UFC 218: Holloway vs. Aldo 2 airs live from Detroit this Saturday night, December 9. The main card airs on PPV with a fight time of 10:00 p.m. ET / 7:00 p.m. PT, with the prelims starting at 8:00 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1 and 6:15 p.m. ET on Fight Pass.

Originally, UFC 218 was scheduled to be headlined by Max Holloway vs. Frankie Edgar, but when Edgar went down to injury, the former champion Aldo stepped up. This is an immediate rematch for both men, as we are just 6 months removed from Holloway’s world title win over Aldo.

How do these two stack up?

Holloway: 25 years old | 5’11" | 69" reach
Aldo: 31 years old | 5’7" | 70" reach

What have these two done recently?

Holloway: W - Jose Aldo (TKO) | W - Anthony Pettis (TKO) | W - Ricardo Lamas (UD)
Aldo: L - Max Holloway (TKO) | W - Frankie Edgar (UD) | L - Conor McGregor (KO)

How did these two get here?

Max Blessed Holloway has been on an incredible run. When he came to the UFC in 2012 he was just 4-0, and he started his UFC career going 3-3. But he’s a perfect 11-0 since, with wins over 3 of the current top 5 in the division. And not just wins, but dominating wins. Holloway has become a well-rounded killer in there, adding a dangerous submission game to what has always been a calculatingly nasty striking game. He’s filled with confidence and at his absolute best right now - truly one of the best in the world.

Jose Aldo may only be 6 years older than Holloway, but he feels like a fighter from a completely different generation. Aldo was the long-standing king of the Featherweight division in WEC and UFC. With 9 combined title defenses and 2 separate runs, he remains the greatest Featherweight the sport has ever seen, and in discussion when you talk about the very best of all time, period. But the past years have not been great to him. He’s had big periods of inactivity, fighting only 3 times in 3 years, and has suffered both the McGregor KO and the Holloway loss. This is probably his last shot at another big run.

Why should you care?

Two fighters in the pound for pound rankings who match up well to deliver a thrilling striking battle.