I said recently that the UFC could not be satisfied with their current efforts to find top talent in the bantamweight division. They needed to reach out and sign any and every name available. Picking up solid vets as cheaply as possible, or young talent coming up through the ranks wasn't going to help them promote one of the most marketable stars in the sport right now, while she's in her prime. Ronda Rousey is one of the sport's biggest stars, but fights like her recent drubbing of Alexis Davis aren't going to help build, or potentially even maintain that star power. She needs marketable women to face off against.
Obviously one of those women is Cris Cyborg, one of them is Gina Carano, and one of them, something of a newcomer to the MMA scene, is Holly Holm. Today, the UFC went out and signed the former boxing champion. Dana announced the news via Twitter.
Welcome to the UFC @_HOLLYHOLM pic.twitter.com/BxNVy8SYTR— Dana White (@danawhite) July 10, 2014
Who is Holly Holm?
The former WBA, WBC, IBF, and IBA (among several others) boxing champion is 7-0 in MMA training out of Jackson-Winklejohn's camp down in Albuquerque, New Mexico. While she's only been in this sport for 3 years, the 32-year old has 12 years of pro ring experience looking at her boxing and kickboxing experience as well. She's been training with Jackson for several years now, so she's not new to grappling or wrestling. Very essentially, even if she doesn't have the kind of proven MMA track record for a top competitor, she's an exceptionally saleable opponent.
What should you expect:
Kickboxing prowess, undoubtedly. Holm works at range with supreme confidence. She's got a great kicking game and throws a lot of different kicks at different angles. Essentially, she throws a lot of different looks at her opponents at range, something very few women bantamweights can mirror. She does have a notable love for sidekicks, and uses them to the leg and the body. She uses her hands well to the body and strikes with patience picking her spots. Really she's more of a counterpuncher than an overwhelming striker, but a very good counter puncher. She has a good clinch game to accompany it, but it hasn't looked dominant as much as it is just stifling so far.
No opponent or official debut date has been announced for Holm as of yet, but to get us better acquainted, here's a look at her last bout against Julie Werner: