While Derek Brunson grappled his way to a victory, Kevin Holland talked himself to a careless defeat.
In the pre-fight hype packages the UFC aired for the UFC Vegas 22 main event, Kevin Holland was promoted as a guy who can talk the talk and walk the walk. He only did one of those tonight, as Derek Brunson cruised to a five-round unanimous decision win.
Holland seemed to be more focused on his words than the fight himself, as Brunson absolutely dominated the fight with his superior grappling and wrestling skills.
Kevin Holland displays questionable lack of effort as Derek Brunson scores a one-sided win
Holland slipped badly in the fight’s first minute, which Brunson capitalized on by following him to the ground and into Holland’s guard, doing a good job of raining down blows while Holland appeared to elect to stay on his back on the ground.
Holland seemed to rock Brunson early in the second round, hitting him with some powerful strikes. Brunson fought back, however, and took Holland down once and rode out the round on top once again, even threatening a choke at one point.
Holland was taken down again in the third, and in spite of his attempts to throw up an armbar or a triangle, Brunson got on top again and once more rode the round out on top.
Brunson appeared tired, but seemed to clearly be winning the fight at the start of the fourth round. Holland appeared to land some hard strikes on Brunson early on like in the second round, but Brunson countered his rushing in and grappled up. Holland managed to get up from a Brunson takedown a couple of minutes in but was easily taken back down. The fight went back to the feet, but Brunson’s grappling continued to dominate against the cage, while Holland continued to just elect to stay on the wrong end of the fight.
Holland seemed ready to finally turn it on in the final round, and he managed to score a takedown on Brunson, becoming the first in the UFC to ever take the veteran down. He even landed some very hard ground-and-pound on Brunson. But Brunson kicked Holland off and took him down once more.
One judge scored the fight for Brunson 50-45, while the other scored it 49-46.
This is now four wins in a row for Brunson.
UFC Vegas 22 took place on Saturday, March 20, 2021, live from the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, NV. Follow along with FanSided for all your live news and highlights.