UFC Fight Island 7 goes down this weekend on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. In the main event, former featherweight champion Max Holloway faces rising star, Calvin Kattar.
Holloway is coming off back to back defeats to the current champion Alex Volkanovski, at UFC 245 and UFC 251 respectively. This shouldn’t worry the 29-year-old much as the last time he lost two in a row, he subsequently went on to pile up a thirteen fight win streak.
Having defended his title three times before losing to Volkanovski, Holloway will be looking to get a shot at the title as soon as possible, and knows a win this weekend is imperative. Kattar however, who is coming off wins against Jeremy Stephens at UFC 249 and Dan Ige at UFC Fight Island 1, will be looking to ruin the former champion’s plans.
Analysis And Prediction
The top six featherweight clash between Holloway and Kattar is an intriguing one. The Bostonian’s style matches up well with his next opponent, and he could pose some serious problems.
Both fighters are great boxers, and prefer to keep the fight standing. Both Holloway and Kattar have a brilliant striking offence. The Waianae native lands an incredible number of 6.66 significant strikes per minute on average inside the UFC Octagon, whereas his opponent lands 5.29 significant strikes per minute on average. Offensively, Max is going to have a slight edge, but the defensive side of the contest widens the gap.
Holloway absorbs a total of 4.45 strikes per minute on average, while Kattar takes more damage than he inflicts on his opponents, with 6.46 strikes absorbed per minute. ‘The Boston Finisher’ has a negative striking differential, and it could play a major role in the fight. A key factor that explains why ‘Blessed’ absorbs fewer strikes than he lands is that he manages distance well.
Another significant factor in this fight will be Holloway’s kicking game, which won’t only help him manage distance and slow his opponent down, but score well on the judges’ scorecards. Kattar has struggled against fighters who kick well. Notably, Zabit Magomedsharipov and Renato Moicano.
What makes Holloway’s case really strong is his experience. Not only has he fought the better competition, but he has also had more five round fights than Kattar, and his chances of winning are going to increase as the fight progresses. ‘The Boston Finisher’ can however improve his chances of winning if he fights smart, is patient, and forces his opponent into making mistakes.
Prediction: Holloway via decision
What is your prediction for the UFC Fight Island 7 main event between Max Holloway and Calvin Kattar?