Cris Cyborg Keeps Her Belt in a Brutal Battle With Holly Holm at UFC 219

“She was an amazing fighter.”

Cyborg v. Holm UFC 219
Cyborg v. Holm

Saturday’s UFC 219 took place exactly one year after Ronda Rousey’s embarrassingly short losing last bout in the Octagon. Holly Holm—the fighter who first showed the path to beating the Rowdy one—went up against powerhouse featherweight champ Cris Cyborg, and she made Cyborg work for her full five-round victory.

Judges ultimately awarded Cyborg a unanimous decision, but the Brazilian MMA star knew she’d finally faced a real challenge in Holm. “She was an amazing fighter,” Cyborg said later. 

Cyborg v. Holm
Brutal shot from Cyborg

Holm came out confident and initially looked surprisingly dominant, but early on Cyborg’s iron right hand took a toll on Holm’s face.

Holm, an experienced boxer, tried to shift between clinching and kickboxing distance, but Cyborg’s predatory calm in the ring had her sit back and stalk her opponent. She kept taking a toll with wicked flurries and with coming back harder every time Holm moved in.

Near the end both women looked thoroughly worked over, but Holm had the worst of it by far. Fightmetric gave Cyborg 116 strikes to Holm’s 65. 

On social media some fans gave Holm respect for a well-fought fight.

Others were not so kind.

With Cyborg having proven her power, speculation moves to what she may do next. 

For her part, Cyborg has her sights set on Australian Megan Anderson. “Maybe we can fight in Australia,” said Cyborg, “I have a lot of fans there.”

She didn’t gain any new fans from the Holly Holm camp at UFC 219, that’s for sure. 

Watch highlights from the fight below.