It’s been a rough few years for former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) women’s Bantamweight champion Holly Holm, as she has now lost four of her last five bouts since 2016 (three of those title fights), with her lone win coming against Bethe Correia.
In her last outing, “The Preacher’s Daughter” dropped a unanimous decision to Cris Cyborg after five hard-fought rounds at UFC 219. Still, despite her bad stretch, Holm isn’t thinking about walking away from the sport (unlike another certain ex-champion), as she feels she still has plenty to give to MMA.
During a recent interview on The MMA Hour, “The Preacher’s Daughter” talked about her fighting future and her “absolute” disdain for constant retirement questions.
“A lot of people have been asking me, ‘You had four out of five losses, so you know, you are 36, are you going to retire now?’ I still want to fight, and that’s the bottom line. There are people who tell me I’m the only one who took her (Cyborg) that far, and others telling me to retire. I’m like, ‘Why would I want to retire when I just gave her the toughest fight?’ You know what I mean?” she asked.
“And in a weight class that’s a heavier weight class that I usually fight in, against the biggest person. I was still the one to give her the toughest fight, so I don’t really understand the retirement questions. Maybe it’s just because of the four of five has gone. I don’t see it that way. I am still competitive and have the capability and I still want to do it.”
Still, Holm says simply hanging with Cyborg for five rounds isn’t the goal, as a win over the most dominate female MMA fighter of all time is, and always will be, the end goal should she get a rematch down the road.
That said, Holly — who was a professional boxing world champion for nearly a decade before transitioning to MMA — admits as she gets older, the time will come to put an end to her combat sports career. But for now, she feels strong and ready to keep putting it all on the line.
Regarding what weight class she competes in next, Holm is down for anything.
“I feel like I am the bigger fighter at 135, but at 145 there is so much less stress about worrying about every meal and cutting weight is super easy and it takes that stress away. There are pluses and minuses for either one, but I am open to either.”
As it stands, Holly is the No. 1 ranked fighter at 135 pounds since there is no actual women’s 145-pound weight class. And since a rematch against Cyborg isn’t in the immediate future, maybe a showdown against Cat Zingano — who came up short at UFC 222 against Ketlen Vieira — is in order.