Jack Hermansson vs. Kevin Holland at UFC on ESPN 19
Jack Hermmanson (Left) vs Kevin Holland (Right)
Two UFC middleweights, Jack Hermansson (21-5-0) and Kevin Holland (20-5-0), will step into the ring to face each other December 5th at UFC on ESPN 19 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Hermansson, currently the #4 ranked middleweight, was originally set to fight Darren Till, the #6 ranked middleweight, in the main event card but Till had to drop out due to a knee injury that had yet to fully heal. The Hermansson camp approached different ranked fighters to try and squeeze in one more fight before the New Year but were shot down until landing on the unranked Holland.
Hermansson had hoped this fight would be his chance for a shot at facing the dominant Israel Adesanya for the middleweight title but will now have to settle for a match against Holland who has been on a hot streak of his own. It’s a bit of a gamble for Hermansson as a loss could cause him to tumble down the rankings while a win might not alter his ranking whatsoever. Still, he seems eager for a fight no matter the opponent. Hermansson explained his thoughts on the stakes in the upcoming fight in an interview with MMA Junkie.
“A loss would be devastating of course, but I’m willing to take that chance. I really believe I can be the best in the world and that I can beat Israel Adesanya, and to be ready to do that, I need to be ready to beat Kevin Holland, as well, so I’m not relying on having one lucky day out there.”
Furthermore, Hermansson went into detail about how he expects the match to go, saying “I’m gonna go in there, I’m gonna go after him, and it’s gonna be a first-round finish. Probably ground and pound again, good ol’ ground and pound. I’m gonna remind the world what I can bring to the table. People have been watching some of my submission skills lately. It’s time to get those fists into action again.”
Holland may be unranked but Hermansson can’t take him lightly. Holland has been on a tear as of late winning his last four matches, three by TKO and earning Performance of the Night honors twice in that span. A win over Hermansson could cause Holland to surge up the rankings. The opportunity doesn’t appear to be too big for the streaking fighter and he likes his chances for the upset. In a different interview with MMA Junkie, Holland explained how he plans to bring home the win against Hermansson.
“You’re not gonna hit me and put me to sleep, you’re not gonna outstrike me, you’re not gonna do a lot of those things that you might do to somebody else. I’m not ‘Jacare,’ I’m not David Branch, I’m not none of those other guys. The right hand will be the sniper. The one utility belt will be the right hand. If I throw anything at him with the right hand enough times, he will fall, mark my words.”
It may not have been what Hermansson originally wanted, but there’s still a big opportunity for an exciting match between Holland and both fighters are certainly keyed in for a battle.