Holly Holm’s evening at UFC 208 didn’t end like she wanted. She thought she won a five-round fight and would be crowned the first UFC women’s featherweight champion.
Instead, Holm stood opposite Germaine de Randamie, who raised her hands and had the championship belt wrapped around her waist. The look of disappointment on Holm’s face was obvious to the sellout crowd at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.
The decision came after a fight that saw Holm keep an active offense and land point-scoring strikes, but also included punches from de Randamie that came after the bell. On two occasions, Holm ate strikes after round ended, but neither moment resulted in a point deduction against her opponent.
“Next time, I’ll just be ready to throw back,” Holm said of the strikes after the horn, when commenting at the post-fight press conference.
Holm saying “next time” makes one think. Does this mean she sees herself getting another opportunity at the belt? In the eyes of the losing fighter, there doesn’t seem to be any doubt.
When asked if she thinks the fight should have a sequel, Holm explained how varying opinions of who won the bout typically set the tone to run a fight back.
“I think it warrants a rematch,” she said. “When you have more than half the people saying that the fight should have gone the other way, usually that warrants a rematch. So that would be awesome.”
While the featherweight title bout was contested by Holm and de Randamie, the woman largely considered the best 145-pound female fighter in the world, Cris “Cyborg” Justino, sat a few feet away from the Octagon to watch the action unfold. Since Cyborg is currently awaiting the results from the United States Anti-Doping Agency’s review of a potential doping violation, she doesn’t know when she’ll be able to fight de Randamie for the belt.
If Cyborg isn’t pegged as the next in line, Holm is more than willing to give it another go with de Randamie. But since she’s lost three in a row, Holm knows her options are limited.
“I’m sitting in a spot where my last three fights I’m 0-3, so I’m going to take whatever they’ll give me.”