Kevin Holland Sounds Off on Potential UFC Return After Official Retirement

UFC, Kevin Holland

Getty Kevin Holland prior to facing Tim Means.

Kevin Holland appears content being away from the UFC but admits he could be back for the right opportunity.

Former UFC welterweight Holland is coming off a loss to top-ranked contender Khamzat Chimaev in his last outing at UFC 279. He was originally scheduled to face Daniel Rodriguez in a catchweight bout at 180 pounds. However, Chimaev came in a massive seven-and-a-half pounds over the agreed weight limit for his headlining fight with Nate Diaz and needed to get his opponents changed.

Holland stepped up to the task of competing against Chimaev on a day’s notice but failed to get going as ‘Borz’ earned another dominant victory, finishing ‘Trailblazer’ in the first round without taking any significant strikes.

Following the lopsided defeat, Holland announced that he would be hanging up his gloves. There was speculation about the veracity of the unexpected news.

In the first episode of his podcast “Real Eyes Recognize,” Holland confirmed his plans to stay retired. He added the exception that may lure him back to fighting.

“So I’m retired. I’m officially retired,” Holland said via MMA Fighting. “I’m retired from fighting. I had a good fight, good payday, I had a good run. I see some of the people online [saying] ‘obviously he realizes he’ll never get the belt’ and my little psychedelic trip, that means I was wrong. I can’t be wrong on a psychedelic trip. I’ve lost coming out to Young Boy. That was my last hope, never losing coming out to Young Boy. Times are rough for your boy.

“But I’m really, really happy on the green side. Unless something super-duper magical pops up, yeah, I’m pretty happy with the way things are.”


Holland Has No Animosity Towards Chimaev

Holland and Chimaev shared a heated rivalry that goes back to a Sep. 2020 altercation, when Holland allegedly got slapped by ‘Borz’ at the fighter’s host hotel. Holland later disputed those claims and labeled Chimaev a ‘wannabe gangster.’

During the build-up to UFC 279, things escalated at the pre-fight press conference when Chimaev reportedly kicked Holland in the chest backstage, forcing company president Dana White to cancel the presser for the first time in the history of the company.

The two appeared to have settled their differences inside the cage and put their rivalry to bed. Holland was appreciative of Chimaev and even joked about wanting to put up a poster in his bathroom.

“He put me in a very good spot in my life,” Holland said about Chimaev. “We love that guy. I’m actually thinking about getting a poster of that guy hung up in my bathroom.”


Holland Hit Back at Brendan Schaub

Former UFC heavyweight Brendan Schaub claimed that the promotion planned the reshuffle of opponents due to low pay-per-view sales. While Holland did not take issue with his theory, he challenged Schaub to spar for some of his previous comments.

“Brendan Schaub, he’s always saying weird stuff,” Holland said. “He said something that I thought was weird and I thought it was Schaub’s page but I guess it’s his people. I message him ‘what’s up with what you said?’ and they were like this is not Schaub and I felt kind of dumb.

“We’ve got to get some boxing rounds in for some of the fly stuff he was saying. No MMA. He might take me down and I don’t have time for that s***. That’s why I retired, I don’t want to wrestle anymore.. I think he’s down [to box]. He’s not a p**** unless he’s a p**** and then he wouldn’t be down. For sure, boxing, me, Schaub, weight doesn’t even matter in that situation.”

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