One of the most eagerly anticipated fights for hardcore MMA fights fans ended prematurely and in anti-climactic fashion Sunday in Saskatoon when Charles Oliveira injured his left shoulder just 1:39 into the first round of his main event contest against Max Holloway, giving the young Hawaiian his seventh win in as many fights.
After a bit of feints and mostly blocked punches and kicks, the Brazilian shot in for a takedown against Holloway.
Oliveira pressed Holloway into the Octagon fence and then soon grimaced in pain. Oliveira fell to his back, against the cage, and appeared to pull guard.
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Holloway stepped up and away to resume the fight, standing. Oliveira got back to his feet but was clearly in no shape to fight.
He clutched his left shoulder and then waved himself off as Holloway walked towards him and fired off a couple body punches. Oliveira bent over, still clutching his shoulder and referee Herb Dean stepped in to call a stop to the fight.
Holloway was understandably excited to have gotten another win, though he sent out good vibes to Oliveira afterwards. "Everybody, send your prayers to Charles," he said.
"It's part of the game and it's kind of sad to see that happen. This is how we make a living."
The 23-year-old Holloway is increasingly putting himself in a position to make an even better living as he moves one more rung up the title contender ladder. Even though the win against Oliveira came in a disappointing form, Holloway still officially moves ahead of the last man to beat him -- interim featherweight champion Conor McGregor -- and ties full champion Jose Aldo for longest active winning streak in the division with seven straight.
Oliveira's own four fight win streak was snapped by the injury and loss. Holloway let the world know that he wanted one more fight before fighting for the title, however.
Before the fight, Holloway said that in his mind former lightweight champion Frankie Edgar was the rightful number one title contender at 145 pounds. Now, he wants to take that spot away from "The Answer."
"Max Holloway and Frankie Edgar," he suggested to UFC brass as a headlining fight in his native Hawaii for 2016.
"Let's do it in Aloha Stadium."
The UFC has yet to hold an event in Hawaii, and the state has not had a world champion since former two-division titleholder BJ Penn wore gold.
The win improves Holloway's record to 14-3. Oliveira's still-excellent mark now stands at 20-5.
Aldo and McGregor are set to finally fight one another Dec. 12 in Las Vegas. The bout is expected to headline UFC 194.