In the Clinch - UFC 266, Can Alexander “The Great” conquer Brian “T-City” Ortega?In the Clinch - UFC 266, Can Alexander “The Great” conquer Brian “T-City” Ortega?In the Clinch – UFC 266, Can Alexander “The Great” conquer Brian “T-City” Ortega? – Alexander Volkanovski and Brian Ortega are in the final stretches of an extended showdown.

After competing as rival coaches on TUF 29, Volkanovski (22-1-0) will defend the featherweight title against the No. 1 contender in Brian Ortega (15-1-0, 1NC) at UFC 266 this Saturday in Las Vegas. Some T-City for the T-Mobile Arena.

As you might have guessed, the two didn’t exactly bond on TUF 29. Pranks were exchanged. Feelings were hurt. On top of that, Team Volkanovski’s Ricky Turcios and Brady Hiestand swept the bantamweight and middleweight TUF spots, adding some extra incentive for Ortega on Saturday night.

All this, with former champion Max Holloway waiting in the wings.

Volkanovski is still streaking with a nine-fight win streak in the octagon, having won 10 straight before debuting in 2016. His gas tank and grappling, combined with some crisp striking, has lifted him past Holloway twice even though some thought “Blessed” won the rematch.

Ortega was on a similar path that was derailed byHolloway. UFC 266 is the chance for “T-City” to kill two birds with one stone: save some TUF 29 coaching face and win the featherweight title.

A third bird, would be to for Ortega to rematch Holloway as the champion.

Styles make fights, and on paper, this one favours the champion. Ortega likes to use his BJJ so Volkanovski will need to be careful with his takedowns. His chin will probably hold up, but will his cardio? Can he pile up some strikes to set up the ground game? If he can, that should take some of the starch out of the champ.

The judges will be watching.

At the end of the day, it’s all about competing. Volkanovski can send another message to Holloway with a big win, while Ortega can atone for TUF 29 and UFC 231 by becoming the first man to stop Alexander “The Great.”

And that, is no joke.

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