Josh Emmett is a name that’s been buzzing in the fighting world. He’s got his sights set on a title shot, and he’s hoping to secure it by facing off against former Ultimate Fighting Championship featherweight king, Max Holloway.
Emmett’s been a top 10 featherweight for a while. Back in 2022, he was on a hot streak with five consecutive wins. He was on the cusp of championship contention, but then he hit a roadblock.
Yair Rodriguez stopped him in his tracks during an interim title fight at UFC 284. Then, he suffered a decision loss against Ilia Topuria. The latter is now gearing up to challenge Alexander Volkanovski for the crown at UFC 298 on Feb. 17.
Emmett, a Phoenix native, bounced back last month at UFC 296. He faced off against Bryce Mitchell, who had stepped in for an injured Giga Chikadze. Emmett floored “Thug Nasty” with an overhand right in the first round. That knockout won him Sherdog’s 2023 “Knockout of the Year” honors.
In a recent Jaxxon podcast, the 38-year-old fighter reflected on his year. “I had a tough year. I fought for the interim title earlier this year, then I had a tough fight [Topuria] and he’s fighting for the title. I just wanted to get back in the win column. I didn’t give a damn who was in front of me.”
Currently, Emmett is ranked No. 6 at 145 pounds. His sights are set on a match with Holloway. He believes that’s the only thing standing between him and a title shot.
“I want to get back to that title, that’s my goal. I’m going to do whatever it takes to become a world champion, and I want to fight someone in front of me,” he said. He thinks the clearest shot to the title would be a fight with Holloway.
Meanwhile, Holloway has been busy. He’s fought most of the top fighters in the division, except for Emmett and Topuria. In 2023, he defeated Arnold Allen via unanimous decision in April and knocked out fan favorite Chan Sung Jung in August.