Stephen Thompson explains why Kevin Holland is the right opponent for him.
UFC welterweight Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson is returning to the UFC following a lengthy layoff. He is one of the top fighters in the 170-pound division but has been rather picky when it comes to opponents. Now he is slated to face Kevin Holland in his next outing and is explaining why he chose Holland.
At 39 years old, Thompson has achieved massive success in the sport of MMA. He has two title fights in the UFC and although was never crowned the champion, has proven time and again that he is one of the best to ever fight in the UFC welterweight division. His last bout was back in December of last year, he lost a unanimous decision to Belal Muhammad. That was the second loss in a row for Thompson and now he is being extra careful about his opponent choices.
Stephen Thompson believes his fight with Kevin Holland will be a crowd pleaser
During his time away this past year, Thompson had been calling for fights. He was looking for a bout with Jorge Masvidal or the Diaz brothers. He wants an exciting fight and may have found just that with Holland. Thompson was a guest on The Submission Radio podcast to talk about why Holland was the right fit.
“For this one, it was just trying to get somebody who wants to fight? Who doesn’t mind getting out there and duking it out with you and making the fight exciting,” he said. “My last two fights, I knew were going to be heavy grapplers I didn’t know they were going to try to win the way they did. But I took the fight. I was like, let’s make it happen. And after the Gilbert Burns fight, and the way that people can win, it kind of left a bad taste in my mouth. Guys will win the fight just by laying on you like this, I never had anybody to do that.”
Thompson spoke about receiving boos from the crowd in his last two outings and not wanting to put on another fight like that. He feels that Holland will stand and bang with him and make for an exciting matchup, win or lose.
“Knowing that Kevin will make this fight exciting is why I took this fight,” he said. “There were some talks about this fight happening and we finally got to make it happen and just getting somebody to have an exciting fight, that’s why I do what I do. To be exciting for not just testing myself and trying to, you know, be the best Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson I can be, but I want the fans to be happy with what we’re doing out there. I want the fans to get their money’s worth and Kevin is definitely an exciting fighter and that’s why I wanted this fight.”
This matchup between Thompson and Holland will go down on Dec. 3 as the main event for the UFC on ESPN 42 fight card live from the Amway Center in Orlando, FL.