Frankie Edgar (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

With Max Holloway Injured, What Options Are There For UFC 222?

With the clash between Max Holloway and Frankie Edgar for the featherweight title falling out for the second straight time, UFC 222 is now in grave danger of having a tough night. It could possibly even end up demoted from a pay-per-view card to a Fight Night event or a UFC on Fox free card unless an immediate replacement is found.

Before discussing anything, let’s get one thing straight here: Holloway is not to blame. By now, we should all know that Holloway is not the one to pull out with minor injuries. When Edgar was hurt and out of UFC 218, Holloway stayed on the card and still defended his title against one of the greatest featherweights to ever fight, José Aldo. There is absolutely no reason to blame the champion. Stuff happens.

Now, with UFC 222 less than a month away and lacking a main event, options are limited. They are there, but most definitely limited. So, who are the possible replacements for Holloway against Edgar?


Brian Ortega

This is the most likely and somewhat obvious choice.

Ortega, expressed his disinterest in fighting guys ranked below him, such as Josh Emmett and Jeremy Stephens. Instead, he decided to wait for his turn at the featherweight belt. Well, he could very well become the next to challenge for the title should he take out Edgar at UFC 222. Only two people currently sit ahead of Ortega in the official rankings, and those two men are Aldo and Edgar. With Aldo losing twice to Holloway in recent memory, a showdown between Edgar and Ortega would generate the new No. 1 contender.

Would this fight be the new UFC 222 main event? It’s tough to tell, but it’s tough to see the UFC putting this fight on as a pay-per-view headliner.

Cody Garbrandt

This is a fascinating option.

The former bantamweight champion would move up a division on short notice to face the former lightweight champion, who also happens to be one of the best fighters ever. It sounds too good to be true. If this fight does get finalized, it would be easily one of the most entertaining match-ups of 2018.

Garbrandt was originally in talks for a title rematch against T.J. Dillashaw at UFC 222, until Dillashaw declined the fight due to both injuries and issues in his personal life. With Garbrandt lacking an opponent, it’s a possibility that he could step in against Edgar and generate a lot of interest.

This is truly a low-risk and high-reward fight for Garbrandt.

Nate Diaz

Who cares where this idea came from, because at this point everyone wants to see Diaz back inside of the Octagon, where he truly belongs. A fight like this is just an added bonus.

Forget the potential Tyron Woodley fight that could have happened or a future Conor McGregor trilogy fight. A clash between Edgar and Diaz makes for a phenomenal and whole lot more realistic fight. It would most definitely succeed in saving the show, too.

Diaz versus anyone would be big at this point, but Diaz versus Edgar? It’s as good as it gets for a month’s notice.

Which fight would you like to see the most at UFC 222 to save the show?