Alexander Volkanovski says it's "pretty silly" for Max Holloway to believe he won the first fight between them

Alexander Volkanovski says it’s “pretty silly” for Max Holloway to believe he won the first fight between them

Reigning UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski disagrees with opponent Max Holloway on the scoring of their first two fights.

At UFC 276 reigning UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski will face Max Holloway for the third time in five fights spanning back to 2019. Volkanovski dethroned Holloway to win his first ever title when he picked up an unanimous decision victory at UFC 245, and then he retained the title when the two fighters ran it back and Volkanovski won by split decision at UFC 251 in July of 2020.

Two years later and two more title defenses to the credit of champion Alexander Volkanovski and the trilogy is on. It’s a rare occurrence that championship trilogies take place inside the UFC, even more rare is the fact that one fighter owns a 2-0 record against the other, but that’s how the two men will enter the UFC 276 co-main event. The fights between Volkanovski and Holloway have been relatively close both times, especially their second meeting which ended by split-decision, which has caused debate among spectators and the fighters as well.

Speaking to ESPN this week, the champion said it is “pretty silly” for the former champion to believe that he won the first fight between them, admitting that the second fight was closer, but the first was a shutout according to Volkanovski.

“It’s pretty silly for him to think he won the first fight, so I’m surprised but I don’t need to run his name through the dirt. Again, obviously, that second fight was close but that first one was just a shut out. I think it makes him look silly when he tries to act like the first one, I mean it was competitive but it was clear that I won. The second one was close.

Given the confidence Max Holloway has looking back on his performance in the first two fights, Alexander Volkanovski said he believes the former champion needs to do that in order to believe that he can be victorious in their trilogy fight.

“I think he needs to do that. I think he needs to think he can beat me cause he knows it’s going to be a hard fight. If he goes in there and thinks he’s going to lose, that’s not how we roll. That’s just how it is, maybe that helps him stay motivated, tell himself ‘I can do this’ but I think it was definitely clear about the first one, it is what it is.”

Heading into UFC 276, Alexander Volkanovski is not only looking to successfully defend his title once again, but also the champion believes this trilogy fight is a legacy fight for his career. If he is successful in retaining his title, the champion has also made it known that he’d like to become a two-division champion, with a move to lightweight being targeted.

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