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Kevin Holland taking another run at 170 lbs with bout against Cowboy Oliveira

The noted UFC middleweight has been teasing a drop to the welterweight division for a while now. But it finally looks like he’s making the jump.

Kevin Holland reacts to his submission loss to Kyle Daukaus, later overturned to a ‘no contest’.
Kevin Holland reacts to his submission loss to Kyle Daukaus, later overturned to a ‘no contest’.
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

‘Big Mouth’ is finally set to hit the UFC welterweight division. The top-ranked middleweight has been public about his interest in dropping down to 170 lbs (where he’s competed several times before coming to the UFC) going back years now—including an attempted short-notice fight with Daniel Rodriguez in May of 2020. But, now it looks like he’s giving the drop a serious test.

Holland announced his intentions to drop a division back in November, following an 0-2 (1 NC) run against Derek Brunson, Marven Vettori, and Kyle Daukaus. He formalized those plans in a recent post on his OnlyFans page (h/t MMA Junkie) announcing that he’d be facing off against Alex ‘Cowboy’ Oliveira at UFC 272 on March 5th.

Much like Holland, after running out a strong series of showings early in his Octagon career, Oliveira has hit on hard times lately. Stretching back to a loss to Gunnar Nelson in December of 2018, Oliveira is just 2-6 over the past few years. Most recently, he’s dropped back-to-back-to-back fights against Shavkat Rakhmonov, Randy Brown, and Niko Price.

For both men, this appears to be a prime opportunity to right the ship and get back on track for bigger bookings in 2022. The loser, however, will be facing an even longer stretch of poor results—which could even spell the end of either man’s career with the world’s largest MMA promotion.

UFC 272 is expected to take place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV. The event is set to be headlined by a bantamweight title rematch between Aljamain Sterling and Petr Yan. A Featherweight title fight between Alexander Volkanovski and Max Holloway had also been planned for the event, but Holloway was forced off the card due to injury. Stay tuned to Bloody Elbow for more news and updates as fight night approaches.