Max Holloway’s 2018 has been rough. The UFC featherweight champion has dealt with various injuries and health scares that have forced him to withdraw from three separate fights.
Holloway says going through these struggles has helped him grow as a person but that it also resulted in some depression. The 26-year-old Hawaiian star is back on track and set to headline UFC 231 in Toronto on Dec. 8, but he might not have been ready to step back in the cage yet were it not for NBA star DeMar DeRozan.
The current San Antonio Spur and former Toronto Raptor made an impact when he opened up about his struggles with depression earlier this year.
Holloway saw what DeRozan posted and it made an immediate impression on him.
“DeRozan talked about depression and that really shook me,” Holloway told Sportsnet 590’s Good Show with JD Bunkis and Ben Ennis Wednesday. “He said that he wished everybody was rich, [that] everybody had money so they could understand that money doesn’t make you happy.”
Holloway continued: “Depression is real and that really hit me hard. I was going through a phase where I wouldn’t talk to no one — only my son, like, me and my son would do stuff — if people was reaching out to me I was putting myself away and since I was in that situation now I’m able to talk about it. Now I can tell people, like, that’s not the way to do it. Talk to your family, talk to your friends, be with everyone because you don’t know when anything can change. Life changes on a dime. Live life to the fullest and don’t be scared to look for help. Depression is real.
“[People] keep forgetting us athletes, they keep thinking that we’re superheroes. I like to think I’m a superhero but superheroes gotta fight their demons too, sometimes.”
Listen to the full interview below: