Saturday, November 26, 2022

Holland Expected Chimaev To Submit Him Faster At UFC 279

UFC welterweight Kevin Holland survived a few seconds longer than he expected to against undefeated contender Khamzat Chimaev at UFC 279.

At the September 10 pay-per-view, Holland pulled the short end of the stick when the main card underwent some sizable shifts following Chimaev’s 7.5-pound weight miss a day prior to the event.

With that, whilst watching originally planned opponent Daniel Rodriguez make the walk to face Li Jingliang, Holland was left drilling some unexpected wrestling backstage ahead of a co-main event with “Borz.”

In the end, it was a short night for “Trailblazer,” who was submitted via D’Arce choke inside the opening round after fighting against Chimaev’s smothering grappling game from the very first second.

While he was understandably visibly frustrated with how the fight played out inside Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena, Holland has taken at least one small positive from his first failed welterweight outing.

Holland Takes Small Duration Victory From Chimaev Loss

During an appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Holland looked back on the defeat and the undefeated man with whom he shared the Octagon that night.

While he did give the Chechen-born Swede credit for his abilities and performance, Holland suggested that he was prepared for a quicker submission loss.

“I don’t make excuses. Props to Chimaev,” Holland said. “Like I said, he’s one hell of an athlete. He did a fantastic job. I always thought the kid was good… Not tougher than I thought he was though. I thought he would’ve subbed me a little faster than that. I thought his initial takedown would’ve been a little different than that. So, it’s whatever, no big deal to me.”

Following a brief faux retirement, Holland will look to move on from the defeat by adding a win to his record before the end of the calendar year. Having had his call to face a striker granted, “Trailblazer” will collide with ranked welterweight Stephen Thompson in the UFC Orlando headliner.

And barring a quick knockout win, Holland will no doubt be expecting a longer night on December 3 than in his appearance last month.

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