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Lightweight prospect Kurt Holobaugh got his big chance as a last minute replacement opponent for Pat Healy at the final Strikeforce show. He impressed fans and pundits in his unanimous decision loss but was it enough to get him in the big show?
Kurt Holobaugh lost a unanimous decision in his Strikeforce debut against veteran contender Pat Healy on Saturday at Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine. In fact only one out of three judges thought he did enough to even win a single round and yet Holobaugh's performance was impressive enough that pundits and fans are hoping to see him in the UFC Octagon.
Here's what Dave Meltzer had to say at MMA Fighting:
Holobaugh (9-1), was a late addition to the show, an unknown fighter best known for the story about how he fought and won on his wedding day. As a late replacement, he couldn't stop the wrestling game of Pat Healy and lost a decision. But he didn't get tired, and showed some crisp stand-up when he was able to stay upright. Holobaugh, like Noons, has been fighting at lightweight. He may be better off if he can make featherweight, where there is less depth and a far shorter line to the top. But even if he doesn't get picked up, based on his performance here, he should be strong on the Bellator radar.
Holobaugh entered the bout with Healy undefeated and took it on extremely short notice when Jorge Masvidal pulled out of the bout with Healy. Ironically, Holobaugh was a substitute for a substitute as Masvidal was stepping in for Strikeforce champ Gilbert Melendez.
So Holobaugh didn't do too bad as a substitute for the Strikeforce Lightweight champ. Logically the UFC might want to let him get some more seasoning on the regional circuit but Bellator is out there scouring the scene for talent so they might not have the luxury of waiting and there are certainly less impressive fighters already on the UFC roster.
Look for Holobaugh to get another chance to step up as a replacement fighter soon, this time in the Octagon.
Also I have to point you to this story about Holobaugh fighting on his wedding day earlier in 2012: