Whether you’re one of Holly’s Holmies, love her passion or just find her aesthetically appealing overall, you can’t help but root for her as she makes her bid to be the UFC’s first Women’s Featherweight Champion.
A scathing Cristiane Cyborg is waiting in the weeds, while Germaine de Randamie silently watches and waits for her chance at a belt. So, who’s it going to be?
The Case for Holm
Holly has a great fitness/fighting pedigree (see below) and has always been a tough competitor. She started off in the UFC 3-0 culminating in her epic beat-down of Ronda Rousey. Since, she lost her title to Miesha Tate in a sloppy finish to a fight she was winning, then was soundly beaten by underdog Valentina Shevchenko.
As much as I’d like to see her send Ronda into retirement with a second beating, this may be the better pathway to the top for Holly. At 135 lbs, there’s not much more room for her to grow. She’s 35 even if she doesn’t look it, and it would be tough to go on another title run against the likes of Nunes, Pena or Shevchenko again. Add in the return of Cat Zingano who beat the current champ, and you’ve got a stacked division.
It would seem to this writer, that the only one of the bunch she should be favoured against is Rousey, even though bookies everywhere would still put Ronda as the favourite.
But at 145 lbs., she fights a very winnable bout against de Randamie, a fellow veteran kick boxer. Right away she is top contender and likely to win the belt and be in the mix for future title shots even if she does eventually lose to Cyborg.
You can’t hate Holly, she’s too nice, too dedicated and too positive. So, best of luck to her.
The Case for de Randamie
At 3-1 in the UFC (7-3 overall), the Dutchwoman has suffered just one defeat in the promotion at the hands of current Bantamweight Champion Amanda Nunes. It was in May she won her second straight TKO on the Arlovksi/Overeem card.
Germaine has more experience at 145 which may give her the advantage going into the fight, but Holm is no small woman, perhaps making the jump to 145 easier on her body at the same time.
One thing is for sure, when you stack up the likes of Holm versus a fellow kick boxer, that being de Randamie who held the record for 37 consecutive kick-boxing wins, one of the two is likely going to catch some toes to the face.
With her being from the Netherlands, a win could set up a big card at the Amsterdam Arena with Alistair Overeem, who still near the top of the heavyweight rankings.
The Case for Cyborg
The UFC is saying Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ needed too long to prepare for this fight at 145 and turned down two title fights. While her camp insists she has been asking for 145 lb division for years (due to the toll the cuts take on her body) and simply needed more of a heads up even to cut to this weight. Whichever side you wish to take, Cyborg is not happy. Between comments on our Instagram account 😉 she took to Twitter to voice her frustration.
The worst part is I fought for the division. I didn't turn down I title fight I asked for a march date. 10 years no division and no respect
However, another theory will float above the surface in my mind. I don’t think for a second that it’s out of the realm of possibility that UFC & Co. had a little trick up their sleeve. ‘Accidentally’ don’t give Cyborg enough heads up to fight in the inaugural fight to create more buzz by her obvious displeasure, and at the same time you can get two others to fight for the belt to build more hype for Cristiane.
Because, if you don’t do that, you likely have Cyborg busting heads with no real competition in sight. At least this way you can say there is in fact a Women’s Featherweight Division instead of the immediate “Cyborg Division”, where you have the Mighty Mouse Problem, i.e. no real competition. This is exactly what we proposed to videographer Heidi Fang.