Holly Holm, an 18-time boxing World Champion in three different weight classes, is next in line for a title shot on January 2nd but the UFC odds of -1450 declare that she is no match for the undefeated Ronda Rousey.
Holly who, is right. The fact that Holly Holm has had only two fights in the UFC, earning a split decision and a unanimous decision, and now gets a title shot speaks volumes about the dearth of talent in the women's bantamweight division. The 33-year-old Holm hails from Albuquerque, New Mexico and is known as the Preacher's Daughter with a penchant for bringing fire and brimstone into the boxing ring. The talented southpaw has crafted a 33-2 (9 KO's) record inside the squared circle over the course of 13 years and then began fighting simultaneously in mixed martial arts in 2011. In 2013 she decided to abandon her prolific boxing career and the myriad of titles won in the various alphabet soup organizations in order to focus exclusively on MMA.
The blonde blue-eyed Holm is now 9-0 in her MMA career and has employed her dangerous hands to finish six of her nine opponents by knockout. Yet it is not surprising that once she entered the big leagues and signed with the UFC that her knockout power seemingly abandoned her. Prior to her current stint in MMA's premier organization only one opponent managed to go the distance in her mixed martial arts career. Yet in her first two forays inside the Octagon she eked out a split decision over a mediocre at best Raquel Pennington and then scored a unanimous decision over 38-year-old Marion Reneau. Not exactly the kind of resume that earns a title shot against the most feared woman in all of MMA and a legend-in-the-making.
The UFC Odds Say Mismatch
At this point in time any woman being set up for slaughter by Ronda Rousey has our condolences but at the very least fighters like Miesha Tate, Cat Zingano or Invicta FC Women's Featherweight champion Cristiane "Cyborg" Justino have earned the right to trade blows with the legend herself. But Holly Holm is essentially scoring this date with disaster based on her boxing pedigree and storied accomplishments inside the ring as opposed to dominating performances inside the cage. It doesn't hurt that she's not hard on the eyes either, after all this is the entertainment business.
But how can anyone believe Holm has even a puncher's chance in this one? If you peruse her boxing record she has but nine KO's to her credit, which is not bad but it hardly qualifies her as a knockout artist. In her two UFC battles with two opponents that aren't even ranked in the Top 10 she managed only decisions. How, for the luvva gawd, is she supposed to defeat a monster like Rousey? The only way this one possibly goes beyond a round is if Rousey decides that submitting her is too easy and decides to prove she can outbox a world champion. Now that could get interesting but Rousey has come so far with her striking that even if Holm outpointed her I cannot see her outmuscling her. It would only be a matter of time before Rousey imposes her will and superior strength over Holm and that will be the end of that. Either way the UFC odds are just too steep to bet Rousey and there is no value in backing Holm. Perhaps we will simply have to wait before the sportsbooks like 5Dimes begin hanging their UFC proposition odds on this one and determine where the soft spots lie to place UFC picks.
I guess anything is possible, after all David did beat Goliath, but that was a few thousand years ago and the UFC has rules banning slingshots. Compared to Holly Holm, even David would have looked like a live dog.
UFC Pick: Rousey by submission in Round 1