Crawling over each other just to get a shot at the king. It's a situation that Conor McGregor has long suggested would be just around the corner but this week has really seen it become a reality. The fallout from UFC 194 has been incredibly obvious but nonetheless intriguing.
At UFC Orlando on Saturday night, three separate lightweight fighters, including the champ, decided to dedicate their post fight interviews to Conor McGregor. It was the biggest indication yet of just how important McGregor had become and he was absolutely loving it.
Line them up on their knees with their hands out. I want them to beg me. pic.twitter.com/YCYf0QslNR
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) December 20, 2015
The less than stellar pay packets of UFC fighters means that a shot against a PR machine like McGregor may be a once in a lifetime opportunity. The way to go about that is to either have something the Dubliner wants or talk your way into a fight. Rafael dos Anjos is now the only man who can claim the first of those things so everyone else had better start making themselves be heard.
Step forward Hawaii's finest in the form of Max Holloway. The featherweight contender may not believe he's on his knees but his comments to Submission Radio this week would suggest otherwise.
Unlike some people in the UFC, I don't get on my knees to get what I want. See you soon champ @TheNotoriousMMA
— Max Holloway (@BlessedMMA) December 21, 2015
Eight wins in a row since his August 2013 defeat at the hands of McGregor in Boston and it's clear that Holloway is looking for some revenge. And he's going about it with some classic, nonsensical trash talk.
Holloway has decided to return to his previous defeat to McGregor and has claimed that McGregor's much talked about ACL tear in that fight was not as serious as has been made out. That's despite the fact that McGregor underwent surgery and was out for the best part of a year as a result.
He talked about his blown ACL or whatever, which I totally do not believe because if you had a blown ACL you probably wouldn’t be able to walk, let alone fight.
So I was tripping out that people believed him, and people say that he was injured for the whole fight. He was only injured for the last round. He got hurt in the last ten seconds of the last round.
When I fought hurt my ankle in the first thirty seconds of that first round, and that really did mess me up. I couldn’t move. I usually move out there, and if you watch the fight I hardly moved. I stand in front of him, I move straight back, I move straight forward, and that’s not what Max Holloway usually does. So it would be a way different fight from what it was.
If ever there was a perfect example of just how high a pedestal McGregor is on, there it is. You can just see the desperation starting to creep through the lightweight and featherweight divisions. Holloway could well be in line for another crack at McGregor soon enough if he can defeat someone of Chad Mendes or Jose Aldo's calibre, before then he should probably leave the trash talking to one side.
You can listen to the full interview with the ACL talk beginning around the 13.00 point.