Holly Holm Gets 90 day Suspension Post-Cyborg – Friday, December 30th saw the UFC 219 go down with a main event of Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino vs Holly Holm. The fight saw Holm, a former boxing world champion and a UFC titleholder at 135 pounds challenging “Cyborg” for the UFC’s 145 pound title.
Holm entered the fight a major underdog against the dominant Justino. Holm had vanquished the dominant Ronda Rousey at 135 pounds, so she had experience facing “unstoppable” foes and winning. Back in November of 2015 Holm shocked the UFC world when she knocked Rousey out cold to grab the women’s title at bantamweight. This past Saturday she was being asked for a second miracle by the UFC, but it was not to be.
She made a terrific showing. Holm came out with a strong game plan involving movement and ring control. In the early going, every time Justino would come close Holm would put her in a body lock and hold her against the fence. The tension was thick but Holm would disengage and reset in her boxing stance, controlling the action and frustrating Justino. All the while, Holm was peppering Justino with shots, bloodying her around the mouth and nose. Through the first two rounds, the outcome was up in the air.
But they do not call Justino “Cyborg” for nothing. Justino landed shots in the first few rounds as well and Holm had a weird swelling of her nose that started to form. With Holm losing some of her early “spring” as the fight wore on, Justino was able to land more and more. With the bricks that “Cyborg” has for fists, Holm proved her toughness yet again by making it to the final bell. In the end the judges had the fight for Justino as Holm fell short. It was clear however that Holm had earned respect Saturday night by pushing the champion furrther than any other opponent ever has. HOlm’s face showed the heavy price she paid afterwards.
Early this week, the Nevada State Athletic Commission suspended Holm for 90 days. It is really an administrative process since Holm was unlikely to hit the octagon in the next three months anyway, but should she fight again at all?
Since her defeat of Ronda Rousey, Holm has gone 1-4 against the best the UFC has to offer. In all but one loss she took her opponents the distance. All of her losses were credible, tough fights and the only time she was stopped was by Meisha Tate deep into the final round of their bout. That is a lot of mileage and if you add to that her more than 35 professional boxing matches you begin to wonder how much more she can take.
Holm’s legacy in the combat world is secure and in fact, it is underrated. The chances that UFC fighter is going to go to the boxing world and become a world champion are slim to none. Likewise for a boxer to become and MMA champion in the UFC is not going to happen. Until someone does it again, she is the only athlete that has won world titles in boxing and in the UFC and that should put Holly Holm in the hall of fame for both sports.
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