UFC Featherweight Champion Max Holloway is out of his UFC 226: Miocic vs. Cormier title defense, according to a statement from the fighter’s team, via Ariel Helwani of ESPN.
Holloway was set to defend his title against Brian Ortega in the co-main event on Saturday’s card, but he has been experiencing “concussion-like symptoms” and is awaiting further tests at the emergency room.
“He was showing concussion like symptoms before he even started his weight cut and was rushed to the ER on Monday where they admitted him overnight,” the statement reads. “Initial scans seemed okay and he was released Tuesday afternoon, but symptoms still continued.”
According to the statement, Holloway wanted to remain in the fight on Saturday and “fought with his team” over it. Things came to a head after open workouts this week, however.
“After open workouts, he crashed and was very hard to wake up,” the statement said, “when he did he had flashing vision and slurred speech. He is now back in the ER for further tests.”
You can read the full statement below:
Breaking: Max Holloway is out of UFC 226. Here is a statement from his management team, exclusive to ESPN. More coming shortly. pic.twitter.com/PO4Zm0DeBC
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) July 5, 2018
Holloway’s bout with Ortega was the co-main event alongside the heavyweight title bout between champion Stipe Miocic and challenger Daniel Cormier, who also happens to hold the UFC’s light heavyweight strap.
Ortega would only remain on the card if a title is on the line, so the bout between Francis Ngannou and Derrick Lewis has been promoted to co-main. Ortega will not be fighting on the card. The 14-0 fighter is coming off wins over Cub Swanson and Frankie Edgar.
Holloway, 26, won the interim featherweight belt in December 2016 with a win over Anthony Pettis. He then unified the belts by beating Jose Aldo at UFC 212 in June 2017. He then defended the title against Aldo in December 2017, and Ortega was to be his second defense.