MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: UFC Signs Holly Holm

Holly-Holm The UFC has signed a potential challenger to Ronda Rousey. The world’s leading MMA promotion announced on Thursday that they have reached a deal on a contract with former Legacy FC women’s bantamweight champion Holly Holm, who was one of the most coveted fighters on the free agent market. No exact terms of the deal were mentioned, but the contract is for multiple fights. Holm, a former professional boxer who trains at Team Jackson-Winkeljohn, is 7-0 since starting her mixed martial arts career in 2011 with six of those wins coming by way of T/KO. Her last bout came in April of this year, when she defeated Juliana Werner via fifth-round head kick knockout to claim the vacant Legacy FC women’s bantamweight title. But after signing with the UFC, she will not get a chance to defend that belt, although that likely does not matter to her as the UFC belt is the one she is really after. Speaking of the UFC women’s bantamweight championship, the current titleholder, superstar Ronda Rousey, is lacking title challengers and Holm could very well be in line for a title shot after one or two victories in the UFC. With her striking acumen, she actually makes for a compelling challenger for Rousey, although of course her grappling is completely unproven and until we see how her takedown defence and ground game are it’s much too early to say he would be competitive with Rousey. But Rousey is a special athlete, and even the most well-rounded women fighters in the UFC have not been able to deal with her, with most of her opponents losing in the first round with stoppage. And a lot of these fighters — such as Alexis Davis, Sarah Kaufman, and Liz Carmouche — while solid in their own right, have flaws in their games that Holm could take advantage of, and if “The Preacher’s Daughter” ends up fighting any of them and winning, she could immediately become a title contender with an impressive victory. For her UFC debut, I think a good opponent for Holm would be Jessica Eye, who is another striker ranked in the top 10 who would stand and bang with Holm on the feet, much to the crowd’s delight. I believe Holm and Eye match up very well and think that the winner of that fight could emerge as a potential title challenger in the shallow UFC women’s bantamweight division. Regardless of who she fights in her debut, though, it’s great to see Holm in the Octagon and her addition only strengthens the roster.

Written by Adam Martin.

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