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Holm in unchartered territory
- Updated: February 9, 2017
While a fine fighter and someone you definitely don’t want to insult if you both were in a locked room with help far away, Holly Holm’s sole claim to fame seems to have been when she somehow stopped UFC wonderkid Ronda Rousey back in 2015.
Rousey had been the face of UFC for so long and was practically worshiped as a goddess by the UFC community.
Following the shock defeat, she has since confessed that she seriously thought of killing herself.
But, she persevered, took a year off and resolutely returned to the octagon to face Amanda Nunes in December last year in a quest to reclaim her long-held title and burnish her by now somewhat blurry halo.
Only, she was shockingly and very decisively knocked out inside 48 seconds before horrified fans.
Said Holm on a recent UFC conference call, “Here’s what I think about that: A lot of people have asked me about that fight ever since she had that fight with Nunes.
“Coming off a knockout, Ronda or anybody else – I’m not saying it’s just her, it’s just fighters – you come off from a knockout. It is very, very hard mentally and emotionally.
“If her and Nunes fought before Ronda and I fought, I do feel like that fight would have gone longer than it did, I really do.
“I know she had a year off but it was a year off and back into a title fight. I don’t know how much she changed in there with training. I don’t know.
“I think any fighter they can only know for themselves what they really feel, but I guess I don’t really feel like I broke her, but I do know that coming off of the knockout, when I knocked her out, that helped the fight with Nunes go faster if that makes any sense. I don’t mean that in any rude way.”
Since her dramatic victory over Rousey, Holm has had a rather hard time of it, with the genuine fear being that her win over her prestigious opponent would be the ultimate highlight of her career as she has lost two of her following fights. She hurries to address this.
“I don’t want my whole career to be defined around getting the belt from Ronda,” Holm said.
“I want my career to be defined by me being the best fighter I can be and accomplishing the biggest things I can, from whatever competition comes in front of me.”
On Saturday will come a golden opportunity for her to stamp powerful her feet in the sands of time as she faces Germaine de Randamie for the inaugural featherweight championship.
If she wins the bout, she will become the first and only two-division female champion in UFC history.
If she loses, well she can always claim she once beat the formerly magnificent Rousey. That certainly is no mean achievement.