UFC 272 was a big night for Kevin Holland, and not just because he was winless in his last three trips to the octagon.
Two losses and a no contest due to an accidental head butt were something Holland no doubt wanted to put behind him — but he was also making his welterweight debut in the promotion against Brazil’s Alex Oliveira, himself looking to shake off a three-fight skid.
Holland opened up the action with a high kick that was blocked. He’d mix in a leg kick, but opened himself up to counters while charging in. Making that mistake more than once, Holland found himself caught with an Oliveira punch, but recovered quickly. Oliviera would later catch a kick, but couldn’t upend Holland.
Through the first two minutes, Holland seemed to have a sort of nervous energy to him. He’d later end up eating a leg kick that took his feet out from under him, though he’d tie up a leg and get back to the feet — only to then be taken down by “Cowboy” Oliveira. Moments later, Holland managed to turn the tables, unloading on Oliveira and rocking him! The Brazilian recovered in a flash, and began moving forward, but he was taking some deep breaths.
In the dying seconds of the round, Oliveira was able to take the back, practically rolling into a rear-naked choke. Rather than fight it, Holland gave two thumbs up and rode out the clock.
His corner was not happy between rounds, and Kevin Holland came out in the second on a mission. Round two did not last long. Holland caught Oliveira early with a right hand, sending him sprawling across the cage. Holland immediately went for the kill, pilling on with ground n’ pound including some heavy elbows. That sent in the ref, and Holland had a win to cap off his 170lb coming out party.
Official Result: Kevin Holland def. Alex Oliveira by TKO, Round 2, 0:38