Max Holloway vs Yair Rodriguez in the works for UFC Fight Night 191 on July 17

Max Holloway

Max Holloway is set to take on Yair Rodriguez in the main event of UFC Fight Night 191 on July 17.

Holloway (22-6), the former UFC featherweight champion, is one of the most popular fighters on the UFC roster.

The Hawaiian-born star, 29, scored a unanimous decision win over Calvin Kattar in their featherweight clash on Dana White's 'Fight Island' in January - his first time in the octagon since July 2020.

Fighting out of Waianae, Hawaii, Holloway will look to string back-to-back wins together for the first time since 2018 when he takes on Rodriguez in a high-stakes shootout. 

News of the fight was first reported by ESPN

Headlining the action-packed card, the 'Blessed' Express will be hoping to set up a world title shot against current champion Alexander Volkanovski should he beat the No. 3 ranked Mexican. 

Rodriguez (13-2) has won all bar one of his UFC fights and was the Ultimate Fighter: Latin America winner in 2014. He has not fought in almost two years.  

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'El Pantera' outpointed the highly-experienced Jeremy Stephens at UFC Boston in July 2019, but knows he will have to put on a career-best performance to beat the 29-year-old. 

Holloway comprehensively lost to Volkanovski at UFC 245, before losing a close split decision in their rematch at UFC 251. 

But 'Blessed' - who boasts wins over the likes of Jose Aldo, Frankie Edgar and Brian Ortega - bounced back from his most recent setback with victory against New England Cartel's Kattar in January. 

Max Holloway

Speaking to the media at the UFC post-fight press conference, Dana White admitted Holloway had done enough to deserve a third crack at the UFC featherweight champion, telling MMA Junkie

"I think we have to [give Holloway a third shot]. I think we have to.

"I mean, when you’re the champion, you have the top five guys in the world gunning at you.

"When you’re the No. 1 contender in the world, you’ve got the top 10 guys in the world.

"Sometimes, No. 8 is more dangerous than No. 3.

"Tonight, he fought a bad dude that a lot of people thought was going to beat him.

"He went out and treated him like No. 6, so he did what he needed to do in spectacular fashion tonight.

"I think that he deserves to fight Volkanovski again."

However, with Volkanovski poised to defend his featherweight championship against Ortega, the UFC is experiencing a bit of a logjam at the top of the featherweight division.

Rather than remain on the sidelines, it seems like Holloway has opted to stay active in 2021 instead. 

Read more: Jon Jones reveals timeline for UFC return

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