After months of hype, former ESPY-nominated boxer Holly Holm made her long anticipated UFC debut this Saturday at UFC 184. She walked away with a split-decision victory, but didn't impress to the level in which would earn her a UFC title shot. Nevertheless, Holm remained unbeaten, and impressed the champion enough to get mentioned as a potential opponent.
Holm worked punches on opponent Raquel Pennington from a distance, also relying heavily on kicks, although many didn't land. She controlled the first two rounds, but worked a lot from the clinch-- an area she'd have to avoid like the plague if she ever wants a chance at defeating current UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey.
Pennington came out aggressive in the third round, beating Holm at her own game. Pennington abandoned the clinch and kicks in favor of an up-tempo, punch based attack. Pennington caught Holm with a big punch that put her on the floor, and followed up with another solid shot. This continued for the duration of the third round, enough to earn her the round on at least two scorecards.
Speaking of the scorecards, they were all over the place, at 30-27, 29-28 and 28-29. When all was said and done, Holly Holm earned the split decision win, but calmed talks of a title shot, at least from the media's end. Ronda Rousey didn't necessarily agree however, as she was on Rousey's short list of possible foes. At the post fight presser, Dana White said Holm would need a few more fights first.
Elsewhere on the card, Rousey teammate Jake Ellenberger finally got back on the winning track with an impressive submission win over Josh Koscheck that earned him a $50,000 performance bonus. There was no fight of the night announced, but Ronda Rousey, Tim Means and Tony Ferguson earned the three remaining $50,000 bonuses. Dana White said that others who performed impressively on the card would also be getting checks.