Holloway delivers ‘KO of the century’

Holloway, 32, won the commemorative BMF title, awarded to the UFC’s ‘baddest’ fighter, and the description could not be more apt considering Holloway, who was set to win the bout by decision, risked defeat in favour of entertaining the fans and chasing a knockout.

“When we were sat in a room and we came up with the idea of BMF, tonight is what that belt was built for,” said White.

“There should be a picture of that fight in the dictionary when you look up BMF. It was incredible. That’s why Max Holloway is beloved.

“Tonight was a career-defining moment for a guy who’s already accomplished great things – one of, if not the, best featherweight ever.”

The footage of the knockout already has more than 10 million views on social media, with the UFC capitalising on its popularity by sharing the video worldwide – something the promotion rarely does following pay-per-view events because of broadcasting contracts.

Holloway’s exploits also earned him $600,000 (£481,000), with the Hawaii fighter earning the performance and fight of the night bonuses.

Despite the acclaim, Holloway says the knockout ranks as the second-best moment of his career, behind his win over Brazil’s Jose Aldo in 2017 for the featherweight title.

In victory, Holloway, nicknamed Blessed, extends his UFC record to 22 wins from 29 fights across 12 years in the promotion.

“This is what the BMF is known for, but first of all I want to change the name to Blessed Man Forever,” said Holloway.

“If that’s not a BMF moment I don’t know what is. This is the type of stuff you do to etch your name in the history book.”

Holloway said he has “a number of options on the table” following the win over Gaethje, but he is targeting a match-up with featherweight champion Ilia Topuria.

“It looks like El Matador is doing everything he can to escape the bull in the pen, but first things first – rest,” said Holloway.

“I got my beautiful wife, beautiful family here. We’ll just chill, brother.”