Kevin Holland

Kevin Holland ends brief retirement, set to headline UFC Orlando against Stephen Thompson

Kevin Holland has not retired after all.

After Holland suffered a first-round submission loss to Khamzat Chimaev at UFC 279, he shockingly announced his retirement from the sport. Many, including Dana White didn’t believe Holland actually retired but he said he did what he wanted in getting paid and getting out.

“Had a good run 30 in a little over a month got paid I’m out,” Holland wrote on Instagram and recently confirmed his retirement on his new podcast.

“So I’m retired. I’m officially retired,” Holland said on Real Eyes Recognize podcast (via MMAFighting). “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.”

Although Kevin Holland doubled down on his retirement, on Wednesday, the UFC announced on social media that ‘Trailblazer’ will headline UFC Orlando against Stephen Thompson. The event will take place on December 3.

Kevin Holland (23-8 and one No Contest) is coming off the submission loss to Khamzat Chimaev, yet since dropping down to welterweight he’s 2-0. In his two UFC welterweight fights he submitted Tim Means and knocked out Alex Oliveira.

Stephen Thompson (16-6-1) has not fought since last December when he suffered his second straight loss as he dropped a decision to Belal Muhammad after losing a decision to Gilbert Burns. He’s currently ranked seventh at welterweight and has been adamant to fight a striker next time out. In his last 10 fights, ‘Wonderboy’ is 4-5 and one No Contest.

With Holland vs. Thompson set to headline UFC Orlando, the fight card is as follows:

  • Kevin Holland vs. Stephen Thompson
  • Derek Brunson vs. Jack Hermansson
  • Bryan Barberena vs. Rafael dos Anjos
  • Tracy Cortez vs. Amanda Ribas
  • Darren Elkins vs. Jonathan Pearce
  • Matheus Nicolau vs. Matt Schnell
  • Eryk Anders vs. Kyle Daukaus
  • Marc Diakiese vs. Michael Johnson
  • Clay Guida vs. Scott Holtzman
  • Emily Ducote vs. Angela Hill
  • Francis Marshall vs. Marcelo Rojo
  • Natan Levy vs. Genaro Valdez
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Cole Shelton
Cole Shelton covers MMA for, MMANews, and while also being the lead MMA odds writer for Sports Betting Dime