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411 Fact or Fiction MMA: Should Holly Holm get a Rematch?

February 15, 2017 | Posted by Lorenzo Vasquez

Welcome back to another edition of 411 Fact or Fiction MMA! I’m your host, Lorenzo Vasquez III, and it is my pleasure to bring you the fact and the fiction within all the chitchat making waves in professional mixed martial arts. First and foremost, thank you for your votes and comments last week. It is appreciated and I encourage you to do the same this week. Last week, I stepped in on short notice to tangle with Alex Rella over Dana White holding a grudge with Jon Jones, the UFC giving Ryan Bader to Bellator MMA, and Daniel Cormier standing up with Anthony Johnson in addition to other topics. It was a close battle to start. Alex threw thundering rights while I covered and countered with blasting rights of my own. When the dust settled, Alex was left collecting himself as I stood with my arms raised with a 16-to-12 victory. Thank you, Alex, for your contribution and efforts.

This week, we finally get a dream marquee matchup as Robert “The Last Rider” Winfree battles Evan “The White Tiger” Zivin. These two will rip and grind flesh as they tackle subjects like Holly Holm deserving a rematch for the women’s featherweight strap, Nate Diaz having better boxing craft than Conor McGregor, Ian McCall having more withdrawals on his UFC record than wins or losses, and much more! Go get that grub, ladies and gentlemen. Sit back and relax because it’s time for another round of, 411 Fact or Fiction MMA! Let us proceed…

TALE OF THE TAPE
RED CORNER
Evan “White Tiger” Zivin
Contributor, 411 MMA Zone
2-4-0

VS

BLUE CORNER
Robert “The Last Rider” Winfree
Contributor/Live Coverage Guru/Host, 411 MMA Zone/411 Ground and Pound Radio Show
4-2-0


Considering the egregious fouls between rounds, Holly Holm rightfully deserves a rematch against Germaine de Randamie for the women’s featherweight strap.

Evan Zivin: FACT Aw man. Of all the weeks you could have invited me to make an ass of myself in your column and give a win away, you had to pick me for the week after UFC 208, that lonely fart wafting in the wind of a UFC event? All right, Vasquez, but you owe me. I get first crack at making fun of the McGregor-Mayweather fight when that’s booked.

Not if. When.

So anyway, does Holly deserve a rematch after those deliberate punches after the bell from Germaine? I’d say so. It’s not her fault that the fight was being reffed by an amateur. I honestly have no interest in seeing Holly and Germaine fight again but Holly does deserve the chance to fight for the belt in a scenario where her bell can only be rung legally. It’s impossible to say what effect those punches had on the rest of the fight, even though she did start coming back in the championship rounds, but a rematch seems fair.

Well, unless Cris Cyborg is ready to fight this summer. Then that shit better be on. And I better not see that referee on another UFC main card. Not until he’s at least taken John McCarthy’s referee class. That really should be a requirement.

Robert Winfree: FICTION Though really, that ref was incredibly bad. The reality is that even if the ref had done his job and taken a point, as I believe he should have, the result would have been a draw and the UFC would have likely either just scrapped the entire division or just awarded the belt to Cris “Cyborg” Justino. At best Holm has an arguable claim to have won the fight, the whole fight essentially hinges on the fourth round scoring I believe, and her performance did very little to inspire talk of a rematch or even a legitimate robbery issue. The issue is with the official, not really the scoring or outcome. De Randamie can enjoy being the first ever champ and ducking Cyborg for the next six months before getting smashed by her.


Unless, she can turn things around, Holly Holm is at risk of becoming the Buster Douglas of MMA.

Evan Zivin: FICTION I get the feeling a lot of people have been throwing around the whole “Holly Holm = Buster Douglas” comparison without fully knowing what they are saying. Yes, Holly became famous for beating the undefeated Ronda Rousey for the title, just like Buster beat the undefeated Mike Tyson for the title, and their immediate career trajectories were sorta similar (Douglas got his ass kicked 8 months later by Evander Holyfield while Holm got choked out 4 months later by Miesha Tate in a fight Holly was winning) but that’s about it. Douglas retired after losing to Holyfield and came back years later after almost dying. Holm lost another two fights but the last one was for another championship (and she arguably won the fight). Holly may struggle to be known as anything other than the one who beat Ronda Rousey, but she’s hardly the Buster Douglas of MMA.

Honestly, if anyone is the Buster Douglas of MMA, it’s Tate. She’s the one who beat the undefeated Holm, then got her ass kicked by Amanda Nunes, then retired after losing one more time. Why isn’t anyone trying to make that comparison? Is it because no one wants to say anything bad about Miesha because MMA journalists all secretly think they have a shot with her? You all know Bryan Caraway would bite your face off before you even get that close to her. Good luck.

Robert Winfree: FICTION MMA already has a Buster Douglas, his name is Matt Serra. While I understand the compulsion to call Holly Holm a one hit wonder I don’t think her career trajectory lines up with that of Douglas, certainly not the same way Serra’s does. Holly Holm arguably won her most recent fight and was winning her fight with Miesha Tate, she hasn’t fallen off of a cliff competitively like Douglas/Serra did after their massive upsets. Are there troubling issues with Holm’s overall game and has she failed to live up to the hype placed on her after she obliterated Rousey? Yes, those are fair discussion points. Holly is certainly in a bad spot in terms of her MMA career, but I tend to feel comparing her to Douglas is more of a hot take than well reasoned perspective. She would need to not only lose her next fight, she’d have to be cut and lose in Invicta before comparisons to Douglas become warranted.


Anderson Silva’s performance at UFC 208 suggests that superfights with George St-Pierre and Conor McGregor may not be so intriguing anymore.

Evan Zivin: FICTION I actually think Anderson’s performance suggested that superfights with GSP and Conor are the only intriguing fights for him at this point. If anyone was excited to see Anderson fight Derek Brunson, it was only because they really like Anderson Silva because, no offense to Derek, but no one ordered that show to see him (assuming anyone ordered that show…).

A decade ago, Anderson would have walked through a guy like Brunson and finished him with ease. On Saturday night, Anderson sleepwalked through Brunson and was gifted a very weighty unanimous decision. It was a fight I wasn’t excited about going in and a fight I never want to see again coming out. If this is what we can expect out of Anderson now, this and the dead fish impression he gave against Daniel Cormier at UFC 200, then I don’t want to see him fight. The only fights he can take that would get me excited would be against a legend like GSP or a superstar like Conor. I’d probably bet on Anderson losing both those fights but I’d watch. You would too.

Robert Winfree: FICTION I personally was never interested in Silva vs. McGregor, McGregor has a title to defend not deal with being an undersized fighter against Silva and spawning a ludicrous talking point about Silva being a super heavyweight after he loses a terrible fight by equally terrible decision. Silva is over forty and has been fighting for a really long time, he’s way past his prime and it’s starting to show. That being said, GSP has been out for a while and it would be just like the UFC to make that fight quite literally years after it was relevant. Silva vs. St. Pierre will be intriguing basically until it actually happens, regardless of timing, as long as they’re both alive and ambulatory.


SWITCH!

Between, Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz, it is Diaz who would likely find more success inside the boxing arena than Conor McGregor.

Robert Winfree: FICTION Nate Diaz is an above average MMA boxer, but there is a substantial difference between MMA boxing and real boxing. Real boxing is done with the feet, not with the fists and Diaz has next to no foot movement. When anyone doesn’t stand and trade with Nate he resorts to taunting and posturing, any professional boxer worth their salt will angle and snipe him, or push in close and exploit his weaker infighting en route to decision after decision. McGregor’s only real punch is that hanging left counter, but he packs more power and has a bigger name meaning he’d likely make more money while also understanding enough about some fundamentals of boxing. And before anyone brings up Richard Perez, if Perez were a good boxing coach he’d be getting paid more to train high level boxers, not MMA fighters.

Evan Zivin: FICTION Only if he’s fighting Charlie Day…

If you’re asking me to pick who would have a better boxing career between Conor and Nate, I can’t bet against Magic Mac. Sure, boxing has always been a big part of Nate’s style and he uses it quite well (when he gets his opponent pissed off first…), but Conor’s gotten better with every fight and is a much smarter fighter. Nate is content to brawl and throw pot shots, which will win a lot of fights, but it won’t beat the elites. Conor would stand a much better chance because he knows how to adapt and evolve and he knows how to use his length and range and he understands the importance of footwork and conserving his energy. I could see Conor being a very defensive, elusive boxer and having a lot of success in that style, just like that other guy who had success using a defensive, elusive style and became the biggest name in the sport because of it. What was his name? I forget..

Seriously, Lorenzo, as soon as McGregor vs. Mayweather is booked, you scratch whoever is set to go that week and put me in. You better..


Whether, the judges got the Anderson Silva vs. Derek Brunson decision right or wrong, Brunson only has himself to blame as he appeared timid and held back at times when he should have opened up with offense.

Robert Winfree: FICTION Can we stop blaming the victims here please? Derek Brunson’s performance, while hardly memorable or inspiring, was enough to win under any reasonable implementation and/or definition of the scoring criteria. As little as Brunson did, Silva did less. I am sick to death of the “don’t leave it up to the judges” mentality that MMA has spawned and nourished. That is a tacit admission that an important part of the sport is not only unreliable, but comically inept. And rather than actually express our disgust with the judges or have an appropriate venue to deal with those dumb enough to be this bad at their job, we blame fighters. Why do we just ignore that a notable contingent of judges cannot actually do their job? Brunson had a bad performance, Silva had a worse one, and the scoring managed to be worse still.

Evan Zivin: FACT When it comes to anything involving UFC 208, the only person I have to blame is myself for thinking there was a chance that these fights were going to be worth watching. It was a mistake, one that I will have to live with for the rest of my life. I accept that. I am so done talking about this show…

I will say this, though: If what we saw on Saturday is the type of fight that Brunson plans to bring against another Top 10 fighter, regardless of how legendary that fighter may or may not be, then he’s never going to be a serious contender. He can say what he wants about how the judges scored it but it doesn’t matter who’s hand was raised. In the eyes of the casual fans, nobody won that fight. Win or lose, nobody is going to care what Brunson does next after that performance. I’m not his coach but if he wants big fights and bigger opportunities in the UFC, he’s got work to do. Step your game up.


At this point, Ian McCall will retire from MMA with more bout cancelations than wins or losses on his record while under the UFC banner.

Robert Winfree: FACT I honestly have no idea which MMA related deity Ian McCall pissed off, but he did a thorough job of it. This was the fourth time a fight he’s been scheduled in has fallen out in the 48 hours before an event and the fifth fight that’s been called off in general since his loss to John Lineker. The man has the worst luck in all of MMA, and at this point I’m not sure why the UFC even books him, just pay him his show money twice a year and assume that half of whatever fight you put him in will fall out.

Evan Zivin: FACT What? Are you serious, Lorenzo? What kind of wild statement is that? Are you high, Lorenzo? Are you high right now? Where are you hiding it, Lorenzo? Where? DON’T LIE TO ME! I’ll get you help. I’ll get you cleaned up. It’s going to be okay.

Seriously, though, he hasn’t had that many fights fall apart, has he? Let me take a look at this…

…oh holy crap. He’s only had 6 UFC fights and has had fights cancelled 10 times, with 6 of those since he fought John Lineker over 2 years ago. That is insane. Do I expect that trend to continue? I don’t know. For Uncle Creepy’s sake, I sure hope it doesn’t. I mean, how has he been getting by since the Lineker fight? Does he have another job? I think he got his show money for some of those fights because his opponents pulled out at the last minute. Still, that’s not a whole lot to live off of. Man, what a rough run he’s had, especially when you figure he’s come as close as anyone to making a Demetrious Johnson flyweight fight competitive when they fought back in 2012.

I really don’t know how to respond to the statement. I’ll just say it keeps happening because fate can be a dick like that. Plus, at least it’d mean McCall gets to be in the record books for something…


So who won? Did Robert run roughshod over “The White Tiger” or was Evan too elusive? You’ve got until midnight eastern on Saturday to vote, so make sure you make your voice heard!


And that’s it for today but, as always, we’ll be back next week with another contest! And please, be sure to vote!

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